The first issue which must be addressed in this tragedy is why Jared Loughner – with a history of mental illness – was able to walk into a store and – with no background checks – buy a gun. In addition, he was – thanks to the expiration of the assault weapons law in 2004 – able to buy an extended magazine holding thirty rounds of ammunition, which he emptied on the victims. In Canada, for example, there is a 28 day waiting period before one can purchase a handgun. No one needs thirty rounds in any weapon to hunt animals, nor do they need thirty rounds for self protection.
The claim that “people kill, guns don’t”, does not excuse allowing an unstable or unqualified person to buy or own a gun.