Ellen Arthur responds to Virginia Citizens Defense League on gun ownership

ellen arthurEllen Arthur, Democratic candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates in the 24th House District, has replied to a press release from the extremist Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL) that singled her out for her “restrictive” position on gun ownership.

Arthur, herself a gun owner, declined to answer a one-sided questionnaire from the VCDL, but sent a letter explaining her support for reasonable regulations on private ownership of firearms in the wake of recent horrific massacres of innocent men, women and children throughout the U.S.

She explained that she believes government agencies should have a record of privately-owned firearms, that gun owners should obtain permission to transfer ownership of their weapons, and that trigger locks should be required to protect children from tragic accidents.

In response to the VCDL, she wrote that the work of law enforcement agencies is “made much more dangerous by the easy availability of guns.” She emphasized that she will never support any plan to take away guns owned by law-abiding citizens.

Arthur noted that the VCDL’s website proudly features reports that the organization “prides itself on being more radical than the National Rifle Association” andmakes the NRA look moderate.”

The Washington Post reported on November 14, 2004, that Philip Van Cleave, president of the VCDL, “believes that every citizen should have the right to carry guns virtually anywhere, at any time, with no background checks, mandatory training or any other interference from government.”

The Post reported that the VCDL’s extreme positions have been criticized by the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police, which supports some restrictions on gun ownership.

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