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Here is a website that shows the particulars of your state's gun laws.  If you are planning to talk to legislators about gun control in your state, looking at specifics here is a very good place to start.
It is set to show my state, New Hampshire's gun law score but it is easy enough to switch to see the laws where you live.  Here is the site:

If you look at the national map on the site, you'll see that both Connecticut and New Jersey, home of the shooter -- the states involved in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting have some of the toughest gun laws in the nation. This shows why we need national gun laws as a tough gun law in one state doesn't mean much if you can go to a state like my home state of NH and buy as many guns of any type you want without any restrictions whatsoever.

The Brady Campaign site is particularly interesting as we often talk of gun control laws but that general term stands for lots of laws that are aimed at all different aspects of gun ownership, sales, and purchase.  Many of them were unfamiliar to me. The site is quite specific in showing just what these laws are and whether they are in place or not.  

Of course, it takes more than gun control laws to end shooting sprees like the ones we've had in the past few days.  Our health care system is waiting until 2014 to be fully enacted.  Mental health care is still extremely hard to get meaningfully covered.  It is hard to believe that anyone who would shoot five year olds was in their right mind. I can think of many other possible factors that might cause someone tightly strung to decide a mass shooting is a good idea, most certainly including copy cat behavior and prior background of abuse or trauma, our culture of violence, our culture of selfishness.  However, automatic weapons transform an insane impulse into a list of deaths ever too efficiently. It is time to make mass killings harder.

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