Sir: In various times past weapons have been accepted in public society as normal: daggers were merely part of everyday dress, swords the necessary accoutrement of a gentleman, duelling the final recourse of honour. But the time came when - despite great opposition and cost - these relics of savagery were seen to be incompatible with a developed civil order and they were prohibited. The time has now come to do the same for firearms.
Invariably, opposition to such developments has been from the male of the species, almost as if it were an attack on his virility. From childhood, boys delight in their gun-toting fantasies of destruction and aggression. Well, it's time now to say to such immature and retarded adults, grow up, playtime is over.
Fr DOMINIC KIRKHAM