We are Democrats, but with President Bush's pleas for a kinder, gentler nation he was almost turning us into staunch Bush supporters.
However, the announcement that he opposes federal bans on the sale of assault rifles like the AK-47 is shocking to put it mildly. Assault rifles are not for hunting but for spraying crowds of people as was recently demonstrated in a Stockton schoolyard full of children. Bush's statement that the states have laws to handle the problem is not good enough. There is nothing to prevent the purchase of such a gun in a state where the law is lenient and its transportation to other states where the law is tougher. The problem, like pollution, is national and cannot be geographically contained.
Finally, The Times mentions Bush's lifetime membership in the NRA. If that membership is conditioning his views on this matter, he is involved in a conflict of interest with what is best for the general welfare of everyone. We hope that he realizes that gun control is a matter of national concern and that he must lead the fight to implement tough national policies.
EMILY A. STARR
PHILIP C. STARR