As a nation, we are guaranteed certain things: the right to an education; the right to local control of government; and government of the people, by the people and for the people.

With the shootings happening in greater frequency, it wouldn’t surprise me if more parents turn to home school or private schooling as the safety of their children just can’t be guaranteed. What good is a guarantee of education under these circumstances?

Then there is the overwhelming evidence that a majority of Americans want background checks and no assault weapons, including no devices like bump stocks that allow the weapons to fire in bursts. It is also clear that no one in Washington is willing to act on this. We are the proverbial fish in the barrel as we wait for politicians to act.

When an object is immovable, what do you do? You go around it. This is where local and state control enters the discussion. If we can legislate the growing and selling of pot, despite federal restrictions, on a local and state level, why can’t we institute background checks, no bump stocks and assault weapons, and initiatives to get guns out of the hands of the mentally ill in state referendums and town ordinances?

We all know this is not a matter of going after the citizens’ right to own a gun, and it never was. In fact, we need gun owners to take an active part in this discussion. We all need to make a commitment to our public safety and our right to a government that looks out for its people and guarantees an education for our children – a safe education.

Marsha Donahue

Millinocket