I asked a member of the Utah House of Representatives why Utah couldn't have a law, like many other states, requiring a universal background check for all gun sales. His jaw-dropping answer was, "Citizens have a God-given right to have a gun, and any limitation violates that right." You mean like "Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?" The Second Amendment wasn't even mentioned. And what god he was referring to was left unnamed.
I asked if 30,000 gun deaths annually didn't deserve a major effort to halt the epidemic of gun violence. Again his answer was breathtaking. "Gun deaths are not a significant number. They are less than automobile deaths." His line of reasoning was baffling. The United States started two wars and spent a trillion dollars because of the 3,000 deaths resulting from 9/11. He quickly shook my hand, saying he was glad to meet me.
When legislators think 30,000 deaths are insignificant, we are in a world of trouble. To pit human life against gun rights is so out of sync with common decency that it defies further comment.
Salt Lake City