To the Editor:

Another week, another vapid editorial by your staff pushing "gun control."

Mr. Cummings asks, "What will it take to reduce the violence in the United States?"

I believe his understanding of violence is confused. What he fails to understand is that malevolent violence is really a manifestation of evil. To eradicate this kind of violence, a society would have to set out on the noble, but naive goal of eradicating evil.

This, sadly, is impossible.

Again I invoke Col. Dave Grossman, who stated there are three types of people in this world: The peaceable sheep, the evil wolves and, standing between them, the benevolent sheepdogs.

In a world of sheep, there will always be wolves looking to prey upon them. To reduce violence, we could reduce the population of wolves, but they could never be eradicated.

Social and mental health programs, a reduction of moral depravity in the media, and a restoration of the primacy of the family might all help reduce the population of wolves, but there will always be a need for sheepdogs: individuals willing to meet evil's violence with the threat of superior benevolent violence.

This is a law of nature that will never change. This is why responsible citizens carry firearms.

Again, Mr. Cummings plays "choose your own crime stats." While the U.S. may have the highest rate of gun deaths per capita, Mr. Cummings fails to inform that I believe we've experienced a 48 percent reduction in total violent crime over the past 20 years, and studies I believe in show firearms contributed to those lower crime rates as right-to-carry laws have expanded.

It's not the guns, Mr. Cummings. I would suggest against publishing half-statistics slanted for your agenda, because it seems to me less guns does not equal less violent crime -- in fact, some statistics show quite the opposite.

My "gut feeling" is cherry-picking news stories for shock value about the most horrific firearms violence, when studies show firearms are just as often used defensively, is repugnant and really quite deceitful, or is it possibly ignorance?

And what do all the mass shootings in years past have in common?

In almost every case, the evil wolf intent on slaughtering sheep was met by sheepdogs who'd had their fangs removed: I believe gun-free zones became free-kill zones because individuals were not allowed the tools to defend themselves or those around them.

There is a reason why Chicago is "affectionately" referred to as "Chiraq:" The entire city is a gun-free war zone where only the wolves have fangs.

If Mr. Cummings had his way, the entire country might look like Chicago -- clearly not a model for reducing violence.

So yes, Mr. Cummings, I will make that promise: I promise never to give up the fight for my right to protect and defend those around me from the wolves in the night.

I am the sheepdog who allows people like you to sleep snugly, for I stand ready to do violence to protect you -- and you will not take away my fangs.

David Kelly

New Milford