Letter: Rhetoric vs. fact

To the Editor:

Gail Lehmann’s letter to The Ridgefield Press May 31 is more about political rhetoric than empirical fact.

Gail stated “The NRA took $30 million from the Russians and gave it to the RNC to help elect Trump.” Gail, your authoritative source?

Gail stated “Every day in this country 22 veterans commit suicide.” Not according to the Washington Post Fact Checker who gives your statement two Pinocchios; author Michelle Lee, Feb. 4, 2015.

Gail, you and your Progressive Democrats have supported “assisted suicide” legislation in Connecticut for years. I knew three individuals who took their own life, none with a firearm; for the families and friends it’s a gut-wrenching situation that lasts a lifetime. Try empathy, Gail.

Gail stated “Since 9/11 guns have killed more children than combat soldiers.”

Gail, there are, according to the Washington Post, “50 million public school students as compared to 1.3 million military” … “meaning service in our armed forces is in fact 17 times deadlier.”

Gail stated “There have been 288 school shootings in the last nine years.” Gail, your authoritative source?

Northeastern University Lipman Family Professor of Criminology, Law, and Public Policy James Alan Fox has led extensive academic research on mass shootings; data was released February 2018. He points out that researchers found that “shooting incidents involving students have been declining since the 1990s.”

“Four times the number of children were killed in schools in the early 1990s than today,” Fox said. “There is not an epidemic of school shootings,” he said, adding that more kids are killed each year from pool drownings or bicycle accidents.”

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control, the overall rate and number of homicide deaths among school-age children and adolescents (ages 5-18) dropped by more than half from 1993 to 2015.

I could go on.

Joseph J. Trench

Ascot Way, June 4