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'Infantile Fantasies'

December 04, 1987

Glidden should quickly resume contemplating the number of grains of sand on the beach rather than risk further embarrassment by his ludicrous effort to philosophically justify the banning of handguns. The good professor may not be confident of his ability to contain his fantasies, but we are offended that he presumes the same weakness in others.

If we follow Glidden's thesis of protecting ourselves from our fantasies to its logical conclusion, he would have us ban automobiles-- we can't risk bashing the jerk that just cut us off; kitchen knives--too many crimes of passion committed with those lethal weapons; Little League baseball--another father may lose control and punch-out the umpire for a bad call and sex--well, for all the obvious reasons.

Millions of Americans own handguns--a few, as Glidden suggests, based on some fantasized concept of possible poetic retribution. The vast majority however, own their handguns for real world leisure pursuits such as competitive shooting and hunting and yes, some, for legitimate, rational self-defense needs. Based on our experience with a broad representation of handgun owners, we are a great deal more confident of the probability of their rational behavior than we are of Glidden's.

DAVID C. BRITTON

Anaheim

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