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Life in public-shooting-era America: 'You can't just not go'

FILE - In this July 29, 2019 file photo FBI personnel pass a ticket booth at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in Calif., the morning after a gunman killed multiple people and wounded over a dozen others. A law enforcement official identified the gunman as Santino William Legan. Legan killed himself, according to a finding by the Santa Clara County coroner's office that contradicts earlier police accounts that officers fired the fatal shot. (AP Photo/Noah Berger, File)

Regarding recent news coverage of the July 28 shooting at a Gilroy, Calif., festival by a gunman, Santino William Legan: My jaw dropped when I read that the owner of Big Mikes Gun and Ammo shop in Nevada, the man who legally sold the 19-year-old gunman the semi-automatic assault rifle, claimed the boy “was acting happy and showed no reasons for concern” when they met. The owner posted he was “heartbroken this could ever happen.”

What in the world did he think the young man was going to do with this military-style weapon? No good can come from owning such an item. It’s only greed and stupidity that would prompt someone to own a business that would put such weapons into the hands of a teenager. It may have been legal, but it is outrageous.

Not only should the gun store owner be losing sleep and put out of business over his moral culpability in this tragedy, but he needs to be held criminally responsible for Legan’s actions.

Oh, wait, such laws are the job of senators, such as Missouri's Roy Blunt and Josh Hawley, and our esteemed president. Another fine mess you’ve gotten us into, gentlemen.

I’m counting the days until Nov. 3, 2020.

Sherilyn Krell • Olivette