I am an American, born and raised in New York, and proud of it until today. Between the New York State Legislature ["Imperfect, but necessary," Editorial, Jan. 16] and President Barack Obama ["Obama's worthy crusade on guns," Editorial, Jan. 17], these are knee-jerk reactions to a tragedy, and my rights have been diminished.

Instead of taking the opportunity to bring the nation together by having a bipartisan forum to end this madness spreading through our society, they have driven a huge wedge between the proponents and opponents of gun control.

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What's next? Limiting the amount of horsepower in your car? If you think that's not a weapon, then you are wrong. A speeding automobile is just as deadly as a bullet. After that, what else will we be asked to live without?

I am truly sorry for those who have lost someone to a maniac with a gun or knife or drunken driver, but what has been done in response does nothing but take away from those who have done no wrong.

Thomas Ferrante, Mastic