On March 24 our students here in Guilford joined students across Connecticut and the nation to address their safety and the menace of irresponsible gun ownership with intelligence and passion. Perhaps it’s time we examine the progress we have made in Connecticut.

We have one of the toughest sets of gun safety regulations of any state in the nation. After Newtown, our state leadership engineered the passage of a law that banned semi-automatic weapons, limited magazine size, and created universal background checks. Despite being opposed by many Republicans in both houses of the General Assembly, this legislation was passed. Since that legislation was enacted in January of 2013, FBI studies indicate Connecticut has achieved the steepest decline in violent crime in any state in the nation – by far. In fact, murders from guns have declined by some 40 percent.

We know stricter gun laws work.

But now those who live in states with more gun violence than us would drag us down to their level. Their proposed laws would force Connecticut to reciprocate with others states’ concealed carry laws, and arm our teachers. Teachers, parents, and students have all come out in one voice saying ENOUGH!

I believe the vast majority of Connecticut residents wish to preserve the Second Amendment contrary to what GOP leadership and the NRA want you to believe. We also want safe schools and sensible gun laws, here and throughout the country.  Let’s preserve the Second Amendment, ban assault weapons, and get even more sensible gun legislation now.

Carol Rizzolo, PhD, is a cultural mythologist who lives in Guilford.

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