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Hawaii should be proud of its gun-control laws

In a very ill-timed and irresponsible letter published this past weekend, a writer to this newspaper argued for relaxing Hawaii’s strict gun laws. Seriously?

Given the seditious rioting at the U.S. Capitol by traitors on Jan. 6, a call for loosening up Hawaii’s gun laws is dangerous at best. Contrary to his claim, both the aloha culture and gun laws help keep Hawaii safe. We do not want Maui to become the Mainland.

The writer is also ignorant of Hawaiian history. He argued that had old Hawaiians been armed, the Hawaiian Islands would have never been annexed into the United States. This ignores the fact that many Hawaiian leaders of the time supported annexation, even over the strong objections of Queen Lili’uokalani in the 1893 overthrow of the Kingdom.

Turning to the present, here are some key facts. According to Giffords Center, Hawaii has the third-lowest firearm mortality rate in the country and its gun laws rank fifth toughest.

So why do people need guns? Like many Mainland states, hunting is popular in Hawaii, which is a legitimate reason to own a gun. As for crime, Hawaii has the 10th-lowest murder rate in the country, according to the FBI.

It has a high rate of property crime, but a low rate of violent crime.

Rather than relaxing its gun laws, there are areas that Hawaii could tighten up. These include bulk firearm purchase restrictions, ammunition sale regulations, safe storage laws and regulations on “ghost” guns.

Barry Solomon and Pat Gotschalk

Waikapu

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