The second amendment of the United States Constitution states: "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Obviously the need for a state militia has been replaced by the National Guard and Coast Guard whereby trained military personnel are entrusted with the defense of this country against domestic enemies. Their weapons are tightly controlled and safeguarded.

The only two reasons for a citizen to own a firearm are for hunting or defense of the household from intruders. In either case, ownership of a handgun, shotgun or rifle is more than adequate to satisfy these purposes. There is absolutely no need for any U.S. civilian to own any weapon more powerful or sophisticated than these.

Accordingly, all handguns, shotguns and rifles must be licensed and registered to the degree necessary to match weapon to owner at the click of a computer key. Furthermore, if we had prevented the purchase of more sophisticated weapons several innocent victims would not have died or been harmed at shopping malls, college campuses and Congressional meetings; and now at a movie theatre.

It goes without saying that people kill people whether it be with a gun, automobile or some other means. This incident involving James Holmes appears to be the random act of someone who just plain snapped. We may never learn his true motives but now are only left to grieve the results of such a mindless act.

Joe Bialek