Somerville youth weighs in on gun control

On July 3, 2013, in Latest News, by The News Staff

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7th grade students from the Healey School recently sent in their letters to the editor that they wrote as part of a self-directed project related to gun control issues. They decided to create a website, make some videos, contact politicians and send letters to the editors of Somerville newspapers about their opinions. The following letters are unedited and reflect the opinions of the kids:

Dear Editor:

My name is Joao Lair Bonicenha. I am in the seventh grade at the Healey School in Somerville. I am writing this letter because our class is doing a project on gun control we are trying to get more people to help us stop gun violence. Guns are a big problem in this world. A lot of people can buy a gun and easily shoot someone without even getting in trouble. I think that there should be stricter gun laws and more background checks. Bullets should have bar codes so they can be more easily traced. I think that police and state officials should be the only ones who carry guns. Guns are really dangerous and most of the time they get in the wrong hands. I think personally guns should only be used to defend our country not to shoot up a person you don’t like.

Sincerely,

Joao Bonicenha

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Dear editor,

My name is Leonora Koney, I am 13 years old, I am in seventh grade and I go to the Healey School in Somerville. I wrote the letter to help my class service project about gun control we know that guns are used for good, but there are those people that use guns (weapons that were not created for intentionally killing) for bad ways. I do think guns should be allowed, there are many positives to owning a gun like self-defense or policemen, and the second amendment allows us to. With all those positives come many negatives like people using guns for threatening or plain out killing, guns are being used for many wrong reasons now a days. If we had stronger back ground checks and a limit on ammunition, there should be less people who own guns, the less people who own guns the less gun violence there would be. Every city, town, state and country should aim for less gun violence, it would bring peace to those who have lost loved ones to gun violence and should generally make everyone feel safer.

Sincerely,

Leonora Koney

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Dear Editor,

My name is Mario Pena, and I am a student from the Healey School in Somerville, Massachusetts. I am concerned about gun control, because some people use guns mostly for gun violence and to kill. My opinion is that every time people buy guns they should check them for background information to see if they are a bad influence to holding a gun. If someone’s background is good, then they have the opportunity to hold a gun for safety in their homes and for their family. There should be a law that only people whose background is good should have a gun. Also we should try to prevent people from bringing random guns to our country. We need to do more to keep guns out of the hands of people who will use them for killing or for violence.

Sincerely:

Mario Pena

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Dear Editor,

Hello, I’m Meriam and I’m from the Healey School. Currently, we are working on the topic of gun control. As a social service, we’d like to have an article published in a local newspaper. Gun control is a rising problem, at a state and federal level. It’s becoming harder and harder to control who gets guns, and what they do with it. It seems that anyone in anyplace can get a gun as easy as getting supplies at a store. Background checks are minimal in most states. Recently, a law to strengthen background checks was denied. We hope, by publishing an article in your newspaper, to let people know that we must take action for our crimes. Gun control is an ongoing debate amongst politicians and the people who put politicians in office. However, the people’s opinions aren’t being recognized in congress, and are being ignored. We, hopefully, can bring this problem to attention-even if on a small, state scale. Thank you for your time!

Sincerely,

Meriam Sarrah

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Dear Editor,

Hi my name is Michelle Velasquez. I am s student at the A.D.Healey School in Somerville. I believe that gun control laws should be stricter. Statistics say that if one state or place has weaker gun control laws then people can easily get it from another city/state and bring it to an area with strict gun laws. This affects everyone around this person. I also think stricter background checks should be necessary. The Sandy Hook tragedy shows us that the government should check about mental health and criminal background before someone can buy a gun. They shouldn’t have turned down the bill that would have bigger background checks. With those background checks we could have stopped a lot of gun violence.

Sincerely,

Michelle Velasquez

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Dear Editor,

My name is Thomas, a 13 year 7th grader at the Arthur D. Healey School. We have been working on a service learning project and my main subject has been Gun control. Ever since the Newtown school shooting, I have been doing research on the pros and cons and history of gun control. I would like to express my feelings about gun control. I think if additional gun control legislation did get passed it would stop some violence. But what about the rest of the violence in America? People do not only kill with guns. They have bombs, knives, and even can kill with hands. Like I’ve said in a past essay, should we have hand control? No. Despite this, I’m for gun control, because it would bring the death rate down a little more. We want to intervene into some of the bad gun control ideas as well, mainly the school protecting ideas. The NRA thinks it’s a good idea to arm teachers with guns, and set up armed guards around schools. This is a horrible idea. Not only is it dangerous in the hands of teachers (whose job is to teach, not shoot), it’s also dangerous in guards. I don’t think that more guns around kids is a good idea. We need to work together to reduce the number of accidental and intentional gun deaths in our country.

Sincerely,

Thomas Pinto Franco

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Dear Editor,

I am a student at the Arthur D. Healey School in Somerville Massachusetts. My opinion on gun control is I think it’s a bad idea. I think it’s a bad idea because most crimes that are committed with a gun, the gun isn’t bought legally. People who would follow new gun control laws probably won’t commit crimes anyway and the people who do commit crimes will still get guns illegally. Let’s say someone bought a gun illegally and tried to rob someone’s house. If the law was that you can’t have a gun bigger than a 9 mm, and the person committing a crime has an assault rifle, then person committing the crime obviously has the upper hand. So this is why I think controlling if someone can have or can’t have a gun will not stop gun violence. I think a new good gun law is stopping people from buying a gun online and stopping people from buying a lot of guns because they will only buy more than what they need so they can sell it to people who don’t have licenses to buy guns or for people who can’t buy guns.

Sincerely,

Tommy Tran

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Dear Editor

I am Liam O’Keefe. I go to the Arthur D. Healey School right here in Somerville. In our class we have been exploring gun control as well as its pros and cons. Being a big gun control advocate, I may be a bit biased on this subject, but still I would like to present my case.

Even though we have relatively strict gun control laws, I think we could improve them in a very important way. Every day guns are transported from states with easier gun control laws to states with strict gun control laws. (I am talking to you Colorado). Even if we in Massachusetts as a whole make our laws stricter, it does not stop others from bringing guns from other states here. The solution is to make stricter national laws so you go through the same process to get a gun everywhere.

Sincerely,

Liam O’Keefe

 

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