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Gun Control Debate Rages After Conn. School Shooting Tragedy

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut has once again ignited a conversation about gun control – across the country and in North Texas.

JP Casarez, who owns, carries and uses firearms, says it’s not about the guns, it’s about the people who use them for the wrong reasons. However, the 26-year-old Dallas resident does believe there are certain weapons the public should not have access to.

“As far as assault weapons, I don’t think it’s necessary. A pistol works just as fine.”

Since last Friday’s Connecticut elementary school massacre, the calls for laws to ban the sale and possession of semi-automatic rifles have increased.

As a result, a Dallas area gun store operator suggested gun sales are up.

CBS 11 spoke with Dawn West, a Garland mother, who purchased two guns on Monday.

“I think it’s important to reevaluate what we believe. But I believe we’re not to live our lives based on the fear of something bad happening, one guy going off, going nuts.”

Tom Mannewitz, who operates Target Masters, a Garland gun range, says, “The regulations do not solve the problem.”

The same type of semi-automatic rifle used in Friday’s school shootings can be found at Target Masters. Mannewitz believes a gun ban would not address the issue of troubled individuals who kill.

“Instances like this create a knee jerk reaction. They’ve got to look at something to vilify. And it’s easier to vilify a gun, than a system that has holes in it, that needs to be fixed.”

CBS 11 spoke with representatives from the Texas State Rifle Association. A spokesperson said more regulation is not the answer.

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