Joe Biden is the latest in a long line of presidents who is trying to introduce gun laws in a nation where more young people die in shootings than car accidents
Image: Phil Harris)
Owning a gun is easier than owning a dog in some US states. In Texas, where 19 children and two teachers were slaughtered in the worst massacre since Sandy Hook, a barber needs a permit for scissors but not for a firearm.
A nation of 335 million people owns 400 million guns, and more young people die in shootings than car accidents.
The American gun lobby says guns don’t kill people – people kill people.
Which stubbornly misses the point that people with assault rifles can kill more people than if they only had access to a knife.
Our Geraldine McKelvie was at a Houston gun fair yesterday to show just how easy it is to buy such a weapon.
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Joe Biden is just the latest in a long line of presidents – leave gun-loving Donald Trump out of this – trying to introduce effective gun control laws, without success.
The National Rifle Association and the Republican Party are in cahoots to keep it that way, despite the 45,000 Americans killed by guns each year.
Against such opposition Congress is powerless to ban sales of high-powered killing machines, or stop the mentally ill getting their hands on them.
We fail to grasp in this country just how deeply the Second Amendment right to bear arms is ingrained in the American psyche.
As each new transatlantic atrocity plays out on our TVs, we can only be thankful we live where we do. Where last year police were only forced to shoot and kill two people. Unlike American cops who gunned down 1,055.
Hospitalisations for asthma halved during the Covid pandemic largely because lockdowns meant less air pollution.
Which should give policymakers a clue to what is needed to combat this debilitating disease.
Yet in parts of the North, twice as many children will need inhalers as those in the South. Experts blame poor air quality and bad housing for such stark differences.
The figures we publish today should be enough to make Michael Gove redouble his efforts to ensure his levelling-up agenda effectively deals with such disparities.
His job now is to ensure the postcode lottery in health is ended.
And ended for good.
Birth not girth
When Hayley Roberts joined a slimming club, she lost two stone and gained 9lb 7oz.
But there is a lovable explanation for that puzzling arithmetic.
Hayley was born without a womb, so she needed a surrogate mum to carry a baby for her.
The club’s slimming consultant Sophie Bennett offered herself for the role.
And when good-sized baby Rosie arrived, they both agreed this was some weight they never want to lose.