Buying a handgun in America isn’t hard.
It isn’t at all difficult to get an assault-style rifle capable of shooting multiple rounds that can kill dozens of people in minutes.
Congress has made sure of that.
So have the National Rifle Association and the U.S. gun industry.
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It’s thus ludicrous for the pro-gun crowd to trot out the argument that the Second Amendment is under assault after tragedies like the massacre of 49 people at a gay night club last Sunday morning in Orlando.
In reality, this country can continue to allow most people to carry firearms.
Yet it also must place tougher restrictions on what weapons can be bought, who can buy them and how quickly they can get them.
None, unfortunately, would outlaw the making or selling in the United States of military-style weapons like the AR-15 rifle, versions of which were used to kill schoolchildren and educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School, moviegoers in Aurora, Colo., and office workers in San Bernardino, Calif.
The Orlando killer used a Sig Sauer MCX rifle, similar in its killing capacity to an AR-15 rifle.
Supporters of gun control make the consistent point that U.S. laws are too lax, that people who should not be able to buy weapons are doing so every day.
Background checks need to be expanded to include the sale and transfer of any gun, as Murphy will propose doing on Monday. That could stop questionable sales at many gun shows.
Another proposal worth passage is from Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat: Allow the U.S. attorney general to block a gun sale based on the “reasonable suspicion” someone has been or will be involved in a terrorist attack.
Obstacles to progress are many.
The U.S. House is still balking at taking up this crucial question. GOP lawmakers, too many beholden to the NRA’s cash contributions, hold sway in Congress.
But as Murphy points out, voters will have the chance to change the balance of power this fall across the United States and elect more responsible politicians.
America is watching. This nation needs stricter gun control. Now.