On Monday, Dec. 14, Americans will remember the 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary whose lives were taken by a heavily armed man just three years ago. As people continue to grieve the most recent senseless mass shooting in San Bernardino, they will tweet prayers, attend vigils and light candles. More needs to be done.

Through the years, I have spoken to many law enforcement officials in several states who support a background check program. The Maine Background Check Initiative proposes a common-sense, easy way to strengthen public safety by requiring criminal background checks for all gun sales, including those that occur at gun shows or between strangers who meet online.

Closing that dangerous loophole in the criminal background check system is important and people should know that common-sense gun safety measures go hand in hand with the Second Amendment.

Making guns easy to get is making society more dangerous. I urge the public to join me in support of background checks for all gun sales.

Patrick Harrigan, New Gloucester

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