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Gun-obsessed conservative writer accidently killed after letting teen hold his weapon

A conservative columnist who often wrote scathing criticisms of gun control for the Portland Press Herald has been accidentally shot and killed by a teenage boy.

An unidentified teenaged boy and his father had been visiting M.D. Harmon in his home on Wednesday, when Harmon allowed the teenager to handle one of his guns. The gun went off and killed him.

Harmon worked for Portland, Maine newspapers for over forty years. In a 2013 column, he railed against every proposed piece of gun control legislation that followed the 2013 Newton shootings, ironically writing “But the absolute worst part of the bill is that it would require all gun buyers to take a firearm safety course.”

He has also criticized any kind of efforts to enforce background checks or federal tracking systems for gun purchases, saying that “gun control” should instead be labelled as the government’s attempt at “people control.”

“So much for ‘the right of the people to keep and bear arms,'” Harmon wrote. “It’s one thing to have the government create limited groups of people not entitled to own firearms for good reasons — felons, the insane, children, etc. — and quite another to have the government think it can require that a free people get official permits to exercise their rights!”

Harmon also wrote of Obama’s gun control efforts that
“We can stop calling them executive orders and start calling them ‘fatwas.'” Fatwas are defined as rulings given on a point of Islamic law given by recognized authority.

Harmon’s wife has called the shooting an “accidental tragedy.” Police are still investigating but have said that they suspect no foul intent.

Americans are ten times more likely to be killed by guns than citizens of other developed countries. A Washington Post report revealed that at least 265 people were accidentally shot by minors in 2015, with the actual number likely being much higher due to medical examiner’s idiosyncratic record-keeping methods. Child Access Prevention (CAP) laws, a form of gun control which penalizes gun owners who do not properly store their weapons, have been proven by studies in the past to exponentially reduce underaged shootings.

Nathan Wellman is a Los Angeles-based journalist, author, and playwright. Follow him on Twitter: @LightningWOW

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