The writer suggests that profit kills.
Well, if we’re going to practice at being mind-numbingly literal, the firearms the Founding Fathers had were devices for propelling missiles with deadly force. That hasn’t changed in all the years since, so we must interpret the 2nd Amendment as literally meaning the right of the people to keep and carry devices capable of propelling deadly missiles shall not be infringed.
But that aside, I suspect the editors published the letter because it denigrates the concept of profit. We see the denigration of profit a lot these days. The supposed immorality of profit has become a common theme in our public discourse.
It is, however, an ignorant theme.
Profit isn’t just a good thing, it is a necessary thing. Profit is not a reflection of greed, or even of the psychology of self-interest. It is a fundamental feature of production.
To illustrate, imagine that you have some land. If you grow food on it, then you can rightly say the land is profitable to you, or that you profit in growing the food.
More technically, if you apply scientific principles that double your production of food, then one half of the new total yield is profit.
But notice, either way, that both the first production and the doubled production required a prior investment. Providing that prior investment is the role that profit plays in business.
It is entirely peripheral to worry about the greed or immorality involved in converting a piece of land to farm use, or applying science to double its yield. Neither would happen without prior profit to pay the cost.
Nor is the common laborer abused in any way by not sharing, supposedly, in his proportion of the profit that rightly goes to the owner. Better to work for a profitable enterprise than an unprofitable one. That way, his employment contract is both more reliable and more capable of extension.
As for the gun makers, there are no doubt moral dimensions to explore in reference to their trade, but profit is not one of one of them.