Yael T. Abouhalkah

Claire Davis is latest innocent victim of America’s obsession with guns

Updated: 2013-12-23T02:07:49Z

By Yael T. Abouhalkah

The Kansas City Star

The ugly truth is that America’s unhealthy obsession with guns has claimed the life of another innocent young woman.

Officials announced Saturday that Claire Davis, 17, died of wounds she suffered when shot by a classmate on Dec. 13 at Arapahoe High School in suburban Denver.

Her senseless death is another indictment of the priorities set by far too many gun zealots in this country.

They are more interested in “protecting” the Second Amendment than they are in protecting the thousands of people who are victims of firearms-related incidents each year.

The shooting of Davis by an 18-year-old classmate was a random act, authorities said.

In the days afterward, people around America rallied around the Davis family. Her shooting attracted national attention partly because it occurred the day before the one-year anniversary of the Newtown, Conn., shootings, in which 20 children and six adults were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

In both cases, the young gunmen cowardly killed themselves at the schools.

After the Davis shooting, some law enforcement officials asked the media not to publicize the name of the shooter, but instead to keep the focus on the victims of the incident at Arapahoe High.

That’s at least one small way to approach this issue, one I agree with, which is why neither murderer in the Colorado or Newtown shootings is mentioned here.

Gun lovers point out that the weapon used to kill Davis was purchased legally. As if that makes this any better.

Instead, it’s an indictment of Colorado and U.S. gun laws that it’s too often possible for a minor to walk into a store and buy a shotgun. Or, for that matter, a firearm of any kind.

To reach Yael T. Abouhalkah, call 816-234-4887 or send email to abouhalkah@kcstar.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/YaelTAbouhalkah.

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