Earlier this month in Sacramento, California, a young woman follower of convicted murderer Charles Manson aimed a loaded gun at President Ford at nearly point-blank range. Her pistol did not fire, and the President who recoiled in shock at the assassination attempt, was unharmed. A Secret Service agent grabbed the assailant's arm and wrestled her to the ground as she screamed "It didn't go off!" An hour later, on schedule, the President addressed the California legislature on the subject of law and order and gun controls. He told the lawmakers there is a "truly alarming increase in violent crime throughout the country," but he made no direct reference to the apparent attempt on his life. It was a close call for Mr. Ford - but for many of his countrymen the story ends in tragedy, day after day. An urban American boy born in 1974 is more likely to die by murder than an American soldier in World War II was likely to die in combat!
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