By SEAN SIMONS
Shortly before 7:30 a.m. on Feb. 27, the morning bell chimed inside Chardon High School. As the day began, 17-year-old T.J. Lane walked into the high school cafeteria brandishing a gun, killing three of his classmates and wounding two others.
This event in Chardon, Ohio was a senseless tragedy. But like so many others, this horrifying incident could have been prevented by minimal, common sense gun control legislation.
Under Republican Gov. John Kasich, Ohio is one of the worst gun control states in the country. If a person wants to purchase a handgun in Ohio, they are not required to file a permit, register the gun or maintain a license. If a person wants to purchase a more deadly weapon like a rifle or a shotgun, there is also no requirement to obtain a permit, registration or license. In fact, you don’t even need a permit to carry a concealed rifle or shotgun in Ohio. This doesn’t make sense to me.
Furthermore, what makes no sense is Ohio’s gun laws for those under the age of 21. In the Buckeye State, it is unlawful to sell a handgun to a person under 21-years-old. This is a good thing right? Yes, except you are allowed to sell to a person under the age of 21 for the reasons of lawful hunting, sporting or educational purposes. That’s right, you are allowed to sell a gun to a person under the age of 21 if they claim that it is for “educational purposes.”
Asking a person to register their gun is not unjust, unfair or a nuisance. When a person goes to buy an AK-47, it should not be considered wrong to ask if that person is a convicted felon. While the Second Amendment does protect peoples right to bear arms, it does not say that we cannot know certain facts about these people. We must make intelligent decisions about how we distribute, track and prevent senseless killings like those of the victims of the Chardon High School shooting.