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Letters to the Editor

Letter: New revenue

January 26, 2013

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To the editor:

Gov. Brownback is looking for additional revenue for Kansas. The buying and selling of legal firearms is big business here. My modest proposal is a hike in the taxes paid for the buying and selling of weapons, and ammunition in the our state.

Comments

Gandalf 1 year, 10 months ago

How about taxing churches and newspapers instead?

jhawkinsf 1 year, 10 months ago

Tax newspapers? Yes, and then when they print a story politicians don't like, raise their taxes. That ought to work well for freedom of speech and freedom of the press.

Tax churches? That seems very complicated to me. When I bought my home, someone from the city came by to see if it was valued at the price I paid for it. I guess that's because there is a somewhat established market for single family houses. It's worth what someone will pay. How much would someone be willing to pay for a church? Is there really a market for them or would their value lie in the property only. Developers wanting to bulldoze churches and put up strip malls would be the ones establishing property values. There seems to be an implied hostility there that is worse than granting them tax exempt status. Besides, there are a myriad of faith based charities that help ease the burden of our own responsibilities of providing a social safety net to the least fortunate amongst us. Given the very real contribution they make, perhaps we should say thank you, instead of a punitive tax.

Liberty275 1 year, 10 months ago

That's inconsistent. Shouldn't all the amendments have equal weight and be judged equally?

How can you justify treating each differently?

jhawkinsf 1 year, 10 months ago

I was expressing my opinion. So yes, it's inconsistent.

In my opinion, we need to look at all laws, including Constitutional Amendments and look not just at the words, but to see what was the intent. Then we can judge if that intent is still valid. If it was the intent of the Second Amendment to protect this new country from the British crown's attempt to re-impose it's rule on their former 13 colonies, then the Second has lost it's usefulness. Of course, there may be other justifications for it's existence. Then let's discuss those. Let's tweak the Second until such time as it serves us better. But I do think the time has come when a majority of people believe that the Second is no longer serving us well. The parents of those 20 in Newton, Conn., friends and family of theater goers in Colorado, survivors of mass shootings whose numbers grow seemingly every day want changes.

In my opinion, the very definition of being a responsible gun own is a willingness to engage in just this sort of discussion. Demand that actual hunting guns be allowed, but also demand that those intended for mass killings of humans be restricted. Demand reasonable restrictions, such as universal background checks. Demand controls that don't have loopholes so large you could drive a semi through them. Demand that advocacy groups such as the NRA not only say they are for responsible gun ownership, demand that they support laws that move towards that position, because the majority of Americans today see them as nothing but obstructionists right now. That's what a "responsible" gun own is. Too many guns owners today are concerned about nothing but their rights. Their rights to own whatever devise of mass killings and then justify that by saying they haven't done anything wrong. Well, I can't build a nuclear weapon in my basement and then claim to be responsible simply because I choose not to detonate it today. The definition of responsible is not building such a devise and advocacy towards having you not build such a devise either.

Liberty275 1 year, 10 months ago

If we tax churches, don't we have to allow them further into politics? Imagine an America where the Catholic Party and the Baptist Party are vying for the presidency and you are paying for it because of campaign finance reform.

You don't tax churches, not because you love god, but because you want churches to remain an outcast from our government.

Go ahead and preach to me about the influence they have now, and you'll be right. But it could be a whole lot worse.

Ken Lassman 1 year, 10 months ago

Seems to me that any taxes raised through gun sales ought to be used like a user's fee, going toward a vastly improved background check for every gun sold. Guns should pay their way too, you know, and that includes paying for monitoring and preventing liabilities that come with the use of them.

Crazy_Larry 1 year, 10 months ago

How about legalizing drugs/prostitution and taxing those instead? I brand new stream of tax dollars flowing into state coffers and no more tax dollars spent on a failed 'justice' system. Freedom, let's try that for a while.

Richard Heckler 1 year, 10 months ago

Fire the Brownback admin and his outside advisors.....

Ditching ALEC might well put Kansas money ahead.

Hire back thousands of state workers = bringing tax dollars back home to OUR communities.

Liberty275 1 year, 10 months ago

I think a tax in line with the average other states pay is fine. We can adjust up or down a little, but we don't really need any more punitive taxes.

I am no fan of taxes and would like to see them deleted as much as possible. I've been accused of greed, but that isn't the case. I don't want things I don't earn. I don't want your stuff or his stuff. You enjoy it.

We don't hurt substantially over taxes. We grumble a little, but we pay. It isn't about the few dollars, it is about depriving the state of power (money and power are the same) and reserving more freedom for individuals. People that know me will tell you one good thing among all the bad, and that is I don't have a greedy bone in my body.

Next time somebody doesn't want to give you some new revenue, maybe it's time you start thinking you already have enough.

Thanks for reading. I just wanted to write.

hedshrinker 1 year, 10 months ago

If you deprive the govt of $$$, how does it finance services like highways/streets/police/fire protection/education/hospitals, etc? I don't understand this "starve the government" position at all Government makes parts of our communal life possible.

Liberty275 1 year, 10 months ago

We have different opinions of government and what it should do. I think it should do what is constitutionally mandated and you think it should do other things. I don't know how to say it more plainly than this:

I want much much less government, especially at the federal level, but at all levels. I will pay what they demand, but I'll support any tax cut that forces the government to downsize.

As for communal life, I opt out.

KSManimal 1 year, 10 months ago

Funny how so many people who only want the government to do what is required by the constitution will immediately scream "activist judges!" when the court orders the legislature to fund public schools AS REQUIRED BY THE CONSTITUTION.

Just sayin.

hedshrinker 1 year, 10 months ago

Seriously, you opt out of communal life?: do you drive a vehicle on public roads? Do you hope for police and fire dept protection? did you attend public school? Do you benefit from an educated citizenry around you? This is why the Court is involved in trying to force the State to properly finance education...do libertarians live in some insulated bubble and receive no benefit from being a citizen?...the level of pandering to others' political naiivete is beyond belief.

homechanger 1 year, 10 months ago

How will the government have 97 billon dollars to give to failed green energy corporations?

KSManimal 1 year, 10 months ago

Oh, back to the subject at hand...... If we have new taxes only on guns & ammo, then I believe it's only fair to impose another new set of taxes.

These would be charged on voting, free speech, exercise of religion, petitioning of the government, and on choosing not to quarter soldiers in your home. But.....these taxes would only be levied on people who don't own firearms.

Joe Hyde 1 year, 10 months ago

I would be in favor of instituting Mr. Slavin's suggestion...IF the tax money collected went into the operating fund of the Kansas Dept. of Wildlife & Parks for use by that agency only.

volleydad 1 year, 10 months ago

There has been an federal excise tax on firearms and ammunition for many decades. The "latest" flavor is the "Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration of 1937", also known as the "Pittman–Robertson Act". IIRC, bow-hunting equipment was added to the mix in the 1970s.

Before people jump on the tax bandwagon, it pays to know what's already being collected and how it's being used.

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