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York PA’s publishes a letter to the editor from a health care professional who thinks that gun show ads make suicide easier and more attractive.

Year after year, I have been disgusted with the blaring and offensive gun show billboards that show no respect to women and millions of victims of violence. I have been disturbed by the plethora of “Buy & Sell Guns” signs littering our streets when the gun show comes to town. Yet, I’ve bitten my tongue figuring there was something I just “didn’t get.” But I can’t remain silent any longer. There’s one thing I get: Guns serve one purpose – to kill. So why is anyone surprised that a man would take a life (his own) with a gun purchased at the York Fairgrounds?

The promoter of the show is quoted as saying, “If he wanted to commit suicide, there is nothing anyone in the world could do.” As someone with a masters degree in counseling, experience in mental health, and having faced my own demons during a very dark period of my life, I can confidently say that he is dead wrong. Making the means of committing suicide more difficult is half the battle.

It’s a lot easier to pull a trigger than it is to use alternative, and often less successful, means. Putting “guns, knives, and machine guns for sale” advertisements in people’s faces – especially those who are feeling hopeless, or worse yet, angry – is a recipe for death. So stop the suggestive selling because the bottom line is, you don’t know who’s responding to your advertising and what your ads may “trigger.” Or alternatively, expect that people will die, and don’t be surprised by it.


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  1. Rosemary Boileau, guns are a part of our history and will be till end times…it is not the gun that kills, it just a tool. It’s the hard heart that kills, 51% of most suicides are with a firearm of some sort, but it goes back to its not the gun it’s the individual…everyone is so anti gun…case in point,,if a child finds a gun at home and injures/ kills himself or others the owner of said weapon will be held responsible….but if same child finds prescription drugs and over doses or drowns in tub/ pool or gets alcohol poisoning from liquor in house then it’s just an accident???…it all boils down to family values I was raised to respect guns and life!!!..I studied a lot of history, and to my knowledge even in the old west where a gun was the wy of life, every house,farm ect…had guns but there where no school shootings?????…even in that time of barbarism, we protected our children, so what has changed???


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