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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Change needed

December 24, 2012

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To the editor:

We need gun control and vigilance of parents, priests, teachers and coaches, and no bullying in schools or on the Internet. No guns should be allowed on any campus, grade school through college, regardless of the NRA and no guns in movie theaters, churches or stores either.

Control drive-by shootings and bomb threats. If guns are sold, background checks should be made. We have a responsibility for keeping guns locked up so children and mentally unstable people cannot kill themselves or others. Bishops should report priests with abusive behavior and NOT pass them on to other parishes. Children should not be sexually abused. Parents have this responsibility too, of keeping their children from being sexually abused. 

Stiffer penalties should be in place for people who violate gun rules like background checks and parents who keep unlocked gun cabinets so children can come to school and show off these guns. It’s illegal to serve drinks to underage people and not wear a seat belt, yet we lack gun or weapon laws. We have childproof caps on medicine as well.

The NRA and Lanza estate should pay for the funerals of the victims of Sandy Hook. They owe it to them for the carnage they created. All the flags are at half-staff because we are in mourning with them.  Our prayers are with them and for them and their families.  

Comments

optimist 1 year, 3 months ago

How can we possibly have a rational discussion about the issue of violence in our society with people like this? The most rambling lunacy I have ever read. We are all dumber for having taken the time to read it. I'll never get that time back.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 3 months ago

More guns and tons of security officers at each school is nonsense.

How will that prevent anything?

Best get assault weapons off the street,out of retail markets and go after the black markets. Make them illegal to own. Crush them up and recycle the material.

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none2 1 year, 3 months ago

I think we need to learn a lot more about the killer. Hopefully, with enough cases of this kind we as a society can do more to identify more of such individuals before they do their deeds, and that they can get appropriate mental health care or at least be isolated from where they can do harm.

Sure I don't understand why the father and brother were not more involved. How can you stop interacting with a family member? Stories have been circulating that the killer got to where he would only live in his basement, windowless room playing video games -- basically withdrawing from people. I wonder if his games involved other players on the internet, and if they have knowledge about him. Regardless, until we know more I think we need to give the family a chance to help authorities put this all together. As horrible as it must be to loose child (especially those so young), imaging being in the situation where your kid was responsible. How does someone come to grips with hating their child (or brother) and wishing they had never been born. I would think the father and brother, and extended family of grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins must be dealing with that right now.

The bottom line is Adam Lanza is responsible for this carnage. Too many want to shift to focus to some one or something else. It is easy to want to shift blame since the killer is dead, but we cannot forget his responsibility for his own actions. Others made stupid choices, but they did NOT pull the trigger.

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none2 1 year, 3 months ago

I think we need to learn a lot more about the killer. Hopefully, with enough cases of this kind we as a society can do more to identify more of such individuals before they do their deeds, and that they can get appropriate mental health care or at least be isolated from where they can do harm.

Sure I don't understand why the father and brother were not more involved. How can you stop interacting with a family member? Stories have been circulating that the killer got to where he would only live in his basement, windowless room playing video games. Basically withdrawing from people. I wonder if his games involved other players on the internet, and if they have knowledge about him. Regardless, until we know more I think we need to give the family a chance to help authorities put this all together. As horrible as it must be to loose child (especially those so young), imaging being in the situation where your kid was responsible. How does someone come to grips with hating their child (or brother) and wishing they had never been born. I would think the father and brother, and extended family of grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins must be dealing with that right now.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 3 months ago

So what about the killings in Bath,Michigan when the custodian blew up the school? He didn't use any gun?

Why doesn't the J/W write about this story? That should get some good comments going.

Like we need to get rid of custodians? Well, USD already has, that is why the buidlings are run down.

Bath, Michigan! Timothy McVey,,no gun involved?

Get real folks. It's life.

Someone gets asphyxiated by their own car because they hooked up the tailpipe to the inside. Should the muffler manufacturer pay for the funeral?

Stupidity is rampant as we go into the New Year.

Bath, Michigan...read about it.

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jayhawklawrence 1 year, 3 months ago

I think the letter writer is representative of a large number of Americans and it is not fair to ignore the fears of so many citizens. We are going to have to do something more than what the NRA is proposing and we cannot continue to allow our country to become polarized by a government that cannot agree on anything because they cannot understand that compromise is part of being an adult.

I consider the NRA a necessary evil because we might not have gun rights at all if not for the NRA so to try to demonize the NRA is just going to push moderate gun owners toward the NRA side of the issue.

The best article I have read so far on the issue is by Cory Booker. His positions represent a step toward a compromise and we are going to have to accept that there are too many people in this country who are freaked out by guns to ignore the issue.

Here is the link.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/cory-booker/gun-law-reform_b_2346911.html

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 3 months ago

Does the 2nd Amendment mean that the Koch Bros. should be able to have their own private air force, navy and army, armed with whatever weaponry they choose?

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Mike Gerhardt 1 year, 3 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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BlackVelvet 1 year, 3 months ago

An interesting observation about the "anti gun crowd." Ted Kennedy was all for a total ban on handguns....except the handguns that HE owned.

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dontbesilly 1 year, 3 months ago

I would just add that reading the comments, the ones I did read, is like listening to the answers given to many questions in the campaigns for election just over. There seem to be many people who must keep their focus on their own agenda for fear that any kind of discussion would distract them. Questions aren't answered. What I wonder is how many people who will be running for re-election the soonest will stand up for what they really believe is right even in the glare of the bully NRA. The constitution covers all Americans, not just gun owners and not just gun owners who decide the meaning of the second amendment to allow the gun behavior they desire.

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tange 1 year, 3 months ago

Oh, sure, the (re-/)framers of the Constitution had some good ideas, and they've gotten us some distance down the road, but those guys are REALLY old, now. Heck, most of 'em are dead. And it's not like those geezers were into YouTube or anything, so half the stuff they supposedly said is just made up these days—as if these days have any semblance of those days.

Gotta admit, tho', at least they were forward looking. Gotta give 'em that.

_

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Gandalf 1 year, 3 months ago

Well for fred, bozo and bea and their, everyone should have a nuclear weapon.My answer is NO. Just me, I'm the only person I would trust with one.

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disappointed_regressive 1 year, 3 months ago

I think 308 incindiary's picture he posted about a day ago up above is all you need to know about the anti-gunner's (at least VIP anti-gunners) hypocrisy. It's another "Do as I say, not as I do" moment. Makes my head throb.

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RoeDapple 1 year, 3 months ago

If privately owned firearms were banned then the president would no longer require armed secret service escorts. Right?

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KSManimal 1 year, 3 months ago

When I started reading this LTE, it was so bad....so full of errors, knee-jerk emotional reactions, and outright lies (of ignorance or purposeful....either way, lies); that I was certain I would get to the last sentences and find it to be a parody - poking fun at the ignorance and logical inconsistencies that plague the gun-control crowd....I expected something kinda like that Reber guy writes a lot....

But then I got to the end, and realized it WASN'T parody at all. Wow. Who needs to poke fun at the gun control crowd when they do it just fine all by themselves.

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Steven Gaudreau 1 year, 3 months ago

There are current laws these murderers are currently breaking, right? Would you feel better if a murderer used two six shooters and only killed 12 individuals and then attacked with a knife? Gun laws are pointless because there are millions already in circulation. Criminal minds do not follow laws. Only lawful people follows laws. Gun laws will change nothing. The issue is mental health. Why are soccer moms popping Zoloft like candy? Why are half the children on ADD/ADHD drugs or anti deps? Figure out the mental health care crisis and then the senseless killings may be curbed in the future. BTW, put cops in all schools in the mean time.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 3 months ago

The notion that the original intent of the 2nd amendment was to allow citizens to rise up against the government is completely wrong. Its real purpose was the exact opposite.

NRA Suggests a Police State by Robert Parry

http://consortiumnews.com/2012/12/23/nra-suggests-a-police-state/

Excerpt--

"With memories of the 1786-87 Shays’ Rebellion still fresh, Madison and Washington led the way in devising a system that allowed for the expression of popular will through the House of Representatives, elected every two years, yet with safeguards against hasty changes by having the Senate, elected (then by state legislatures) to six-year terms.

Contrary to the Right’s current false narrative, the Framers were not inviting armed resistance to the government by adding the Second Amendment. After all, the Framers mostly were the government. In the Constitution, they also defined armed rebellion – “levying war against” the United States – as treason, and they included a federal guarantee to protect the states “against domestic Violence.”

The Second Amendment with its right to bear arms was added to the Constitution with the preamble that “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,” indicating that its chief purpose was to enable the government to form militias to maintain “security,” not to invite violence and insecurity.

Simultaneous with the ratification of the Bill of Rights , i.e. the first ten amendments in 1791, was an anti-tax uprising in western Pennsylvania known as the Whiskey Rebellion. So, with the Second Amendment on the books, the Second Congress enacted the Militia Acts of 1792, which mandated all military-age white males to procure a musket and other equipment so they could participate in militias.

State militias were organized or strengthened, and President Washington personally led a combined force of state militias numbering around 13,000 men to suppress the Whiskey rebels in 1794. In other words, the first use of the new militia powers was to put down a popular revolt, not invite one."

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 3 months ago

How about a system kind of like what banks have? A button or remote switch that can alert law enforcement their assistance is requested STAT quietly. This could be worn on a belt, the wrist or as a necklace by staff members who are suddenly confronted with a matter.

Sure some calls may turn out not to be all that serious but would promote the "better safe than sorry" approach.

This remote STAT/ALERT set up would be far more efficient than calling 911. Sometimes 911 entails a lot of chit chat when in fact getting the assistance as a STAT ALERT would make more sense.

This STAT ALERT could also be notifying the school principals,superintendent and any law enforcement person who might be on site.

Law Enforcement as a security officer likely would be best because "security officers" may not necessarily have law enforcement capability nor training in dealing with an intense situation. This on site law enforcement person could be advising any law enforcement responding to a STAT/ALERT as to the exact location and to what extent has the situation become.

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Brock Masters 1 year, 3 months ago

People are quick to suggest higher taxes on guns, fees, background checks and other restrictions on gun owners, but how they would squeal if such things were suggested on the rights they hold dear.

We saw how they screamed that the poor were being disenfrancised because they had to show ID to vote and it was free. Gun owners must show ID obtained at their expense and submit to a background check again at their expense just to own a gun. Further background checks, fees and training are required for a concealed carry permit.

What kind of outcry would there be if Right Wing Religous Conservatives suggest a fee be paid for an abortion? Even if that fee was paid by insurance companies they would scream but imagine the hand wringing and cries of infringing upon their right to get an abortion if it was a fee that insurance didn't cover.

Or how about everyone getting an abortion had to undergo psychological testing just to make sure they were of sound mind? Oh yes, they would scream bloody murder, but it is okay to suggest outrageous regulations, taxes and fees that would make it difficult for some and nearly impossible for others to exercise their second amendment rights.

People, keep in mind that power is fleeting. Careful what you sow today for you may reap it tomorrow.

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deec 1 year, 3 months ago

The "ghost of posters past" has returned!

Gun control is a complicated issue.

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voevoda 1 year, 3 months ago

It is quite possible to permit responsible gun ownership while greatly reducing the chance for firearms to fall into the hands of irresponsible, mentally unstable, or criminal people. Israel does this. Canada does this. Switzerland does this.

We can start by requiring that persons who own firearms be licensed to do so. They should need to prove that they can use firearms in a safe and responsible manner before they are allowed to have them in the first place. Guns also must carry licenses, and owners would be licensed to possess specific types of firearms. Only licensed gun owners would be permitted to buy ammunition, and only for the weapons they actually own. There would be stiff penalties for infractions, including confiscation of all weapons and loss of the privilege of owning weapons, in addition to fines and mandatory mental-health examinations. Passing guns or ammunition to unlicensed persons would be a felony. Storing guns unsafely or carrying them in an unsafe manner would be a misdemeanor, with the penalty of loss of weapons and permanent loss of eligibility for a gun license.

To compensate society for the misuse of weapons, levy a tax on all guns and ammunition to pay for 1) regular-duty police officers in schools, malls, houses of worship, etc. (as the NRA has proposed); 2) mental health care for anyone who exhibits violent or anti-social propensities (as the NRA has proposed); 3) stricter controls on the distribution of violent videos and games (as the NRA has proposed); 4) the cost of first-responders who deal with armed perpetrators; 5) the cost of wrongful death and wrongful injury lawsuit on behalf of victims of gun violence; 6) the cost of tracking illegal guns and irresponsible gun owners and confiscating their weapons.

For similar reasons, require all gun owners to carry insurance against any damage committed with the weapons they own. Naturally, insurance rates would vary with the level of responsibility of the owner, type of weapons, care with which they are kept, family status, place of residence. If gun owners can't get insurance, then they can't legally own weapons.

These sorts of regulations would separate the responsible gun owners from the irresponsible ones. They wouldn't immediately end the rampant gun violence in this country, but they would gradually have an effect.

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FlintlockRifle 1 year, 3 months ago

Mary Ann, you watch way to much TV NEWS MEDIA REPORTING, do you own research, and read the real facts, please

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308_incendiary 1 year, 3 months ago

I agree with Mary Anne. She sets a perfect example. I might add to her informative ideas. People should not manufacture IEDs around children.

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Brock Masters 1 year, 3 months ago

Would anyone suggest that Israel is wrong to have armed military and police in public areas? Of course not since the threat of killings are very real.

Well we may not like it but we are under attack from both domestic and foreign sources. So, why bury our heads in the sand and pretend we are safe or could be safe if we just passed one more law?

We need to take immediate steps to protect ourselves and look for long term solutions that just doesn't address the symptom but gets at the root of the problem - why do we live in such a violent society.

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Lynn731 1 year, 3 months ago

There are over 20,000 gun laws, many are never enforced. We have enough laws. We need much better mental health treatment. It is obvious closing state hospitals and turning these people out on the street did not work. Gun free school zones do not work, except to let criminals know they will face no armed response there. In Israel, a people and country I have the greatest respect for, next to their no gun sign at schools is a sign saying school officials are armed and will protect the children. We could let school officials voluntarily take the necessary training to be armed, concealed of course, or we could have a school resource officer in every school. A school resource officer is a trained peace officer whose salary is paid by the school district.

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Liberty275 1 year, 3 months ago

America, the land of 50 laws for every criminal act and people screeching for 51. That next law is always the one that will solve the problem.

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skinny 1 year, 3 months ago

I think the writer has forgotten there were gun free zones in all these shootings and it was against the law to have any guns in those schools! Now l want to ask the writer this, how did those laws work for you or the parents of those children killed???? They didn't!! Get a clue!! Time to rethink our strategies!! Coming up with more new gun laws aren’t going to work!

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Liberty_One 1 year, 3 months ago

"Control drive-by shootings and bomb threats"

Huh?

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disappointed_regressive 1 year, 3 months ago

I've said before and I'll say it again:

Lock your guns tight in a fool-proof safe that only YOU know where the key is or the combination!

Were Ms. Lanza still alive, god rest her soul, I feel she should've been charged for allowing her mentally ustable son to have unfettered access to those high capacity and powerful firearms.

This is a good start, and VERY stringent background checks. But this blanket attitude about the actual guns and the NRA will not solve this serious problem.

It is a conundrum for sure.

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jaywalker 1 year, 3 months ago

Really bad letter. Appreciate some of the sentiment, really bad just the same. "Control drive by's and bomb threats"??? How? By employing Carnak?

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RoeDapple 1 year, 3 months ago

"yet we lack gun or weapon laws"

Geez Mary, what great source gave you that information? Some sites claim upwards of 20,000 laws nationwide regulating firearms but that high number can be traced back to a politician in 1965 who researched it as well as you did. Realistically there are several thousand gun laws on the books, most with two major flaws. First, the majority of them qualify as feel good legislation, in that they were passed as the result of some event so the public would think "At least we did something". Second, because the feel good legislation would never keep guns from the hands of criminals, they are enforced randomly or not at all.

Therein lies the problem with your ideas. You will only create more difficulty for those 85 million of us who DO obey the laws, who DO lock up our weapons, who DO see the tragedy that unfolds when guns are in the hands of the mentally ill or criminals. The NRA is the biggest promoter of gun safety in the US. They didn't hurt those victims in Connecticut. 85 million gun owners had nothing to do with that tragedy.

This has the entire country stirred into a frenzy and I'm sure more feel good legislation will be the result. Keep this in mind. Brownells, the largest gun distributor in the world, has sold out of extended magazines for the type of sporting rifle used in this mass murder. A 3.5 year supply sold out in three days. All the feel good laws in the world won't bring those back, they're out in the hands of civilians, purchased legally, along with all the firearms and other related gear that goes with them. Most will be stored away, but if even one gets used in a criminal manner there will be you or others like you flapping your arms in the air screaming for more legislation.

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Abdu Omar 1 year, 3 months ago

Do you really think that the NRA caused the :"carnage in Sandyhook"? If so, how so. Yes they are for the second amendment of the US Constutution, aren't you? Why you should be writing about instead of the NRA is the fact that that the gunmen was allowed to get weapons from his mother while he was mentally ill. This is the problem. Not the NRA. His mother should never have guns in the house while this mentally ill man was living with her. This is the tragedy and if she didn't have the gun he used, those victims may be alive today. He was the problem not the NRA.

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