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Comments about ‘Letters: Guns not the answer’

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Published: Wednesday, Jan. 16 2013 12:16 a.m. MST

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Screwdriver
Casa Grande, AZ

Agreed, guns are not the answer.

An honest discussion has never been put forward on what may have happened if a teacher had had a gun there. A teacher with a pistol would be have been terribly outgunned against someone with an assault rifle and body armor.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

I do not think the answer is either "always armed" or "never armed"

We need common sense. Those that choose to arm themselves have every right to do so, however they have a huge responsibility that goes along with that.

We can find countless examples of good and bad uses of guns.

We need to find a reasonable balance.

The far right says - Any weapons, any place
The far left says - No weapons, anywhere.

Both unreasonable. Lets look for the sensible middle ground.

Curmudgeon
Salt Lake City, UT

Juana, thank you for your perspective. I believe that gun advocates who rationalize their fascination with lethal weapons by claiming they need them for defense of self and family rarely consider the adverse psychological consequenses of taking the life of another human being, even if that other person may be perceived as a "bad guy" who appears to threaten their own or a loved one's life. What if the perception is wrong?

We all have to die of some cause. Existence does not end with mortal life. Personally, I prefer to bear the infinitesimal risk of dying at the hands of an armed lunatic because I was unarmed, than to bear the risk and lifelong burden that would accompany killing another person, particularly one who posed no actual threat (the perceived aggressor or an innocent bystander), with my own weapon. In Book of Mormon terms, I would be an Anti-Nephi-Lehite. To each his own.

procuradorfiscal
Tooele, UT

Re: "Guns are not the answer"

We couldn't be more pleased to hear the outcome of your story, one in which pluck and intelligence won out over evil.

But, with all due respect, for every story like yours, there are hundreds more with a different, much more tragic ending.

None of us advocating respect for our Constitutional rights would deny you the opportunity to confront evil in your own way. All we ask is that you extend the same courtesy to us.

Countless Americans would tell you THEY are here today because they were NOT helpless. They had the necessary tools to confront and triumph over evil. The same tools that were denied the courageous principal in that Connecticut elementary school. She was FORCED to confront evil empty-handed.

She died, and was unable to prevent the deaths of 25 others. Not because she lacked your pluck and intelligence, but because, like too many before her, she was denied the tools.

Confront evil as you choose. Use whatever tools you like.

But don't deny us ours.

higv
Dietrich, ID

You can't talk to terrorists. Neville Chamberlein learned that the hard way. By taking guns away from law abiding citizens than only criminals would have guns who ignore the laws anyway and things would be more dangerous.

one old man
Ogden, UT

JoeBlow has posted one excellent comment here. Until BOTH sides of the argument become willing to sit down and listen carefully to the other, not much that is any good can possibly happen. Only after that happens is there any chance of finding GOOD solutions to a big problem.

Grundle
West Jordan, UT

Re:JoeBlow

Wow...I agree with you!

I also agree with procuradorfiscal saying "Confront evil as you choose. Use whatever tools you like."

Some really good points being made here.

I would like to point out that the media has a spotlight on the gun issue right now. We are hearing about every incident in this country of 300 million (+) people. Sometimes we forget just how many people now occupy this land and even this earth. Statistically, your child, you, or anyone you know, will have a very very slim chance of ever encountering gun violence. The issue is being magnified.

It is good that we talk about these issues but it should also be accompanied by education as to why this right to bear arms exists in the first place. I believe in the second Amendment with some obvious caveats(mental illness, felony history, responsible storage) simply because it is the nature of some men, that when they have a little power, seek to exert that power upon others.

It is my INALIENABLE right, within the natural laws granted to me and enumerated in the constitution, to defend myself from tyranny. Individual or collective.

Steve C. Warren
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

Excellent comment, Juana. Thanks.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

Let's try some root cause alalysis...

Gun advocates are simply scared and extremely insecure.
They were more than likely bullied and picked on as children,
and see MORE violence as the only way to counter violence.

The childish play ground antics of;
"My Daddy is bigger than your Daddy.
And my Daddy will come beat up your Daddy."
still apply in their world.

The letter writer is right though,
as a veteran - in any conflict, we were always taught to take out the threat, the guy with a gun, first.
and Bad guys follow that same rule.

procuradorfiscal
Tooele, UT

Re: "Until BOTH sides of the argument become willing to sit down and listen carefully to the other, not much that is any good can possibly happen."

OK, I'm listening carefully. What do you have to say that we haven't already heard?

I'll bet it boils down to some disingenuous sophistry about how liberals can restrict my access to arms without violence to a wise Constitutional provision that says that right "shall not be infringed."

Or, maybe it's some snarky censure of my "selfish" insistence that my rights be observed.

Perhaps even some analysis of why the only "reasonable" thing to do involves surrender of the high ground to liberals and bad guys.

But, I'm listening.

What novel "solution" are you offering?

Ernest T. Bass
Bountiful, UT

Guns is the answer, ah just no it.
More guns is like combating drunk driving by ensuring everyone on the road is drunk.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Open Minded Mormon (aka LDS Liberal),

Scared and extremely insecure? How did you reach that conclusion? Is Obama scared and extremely insecure? Do you care to tell us how many armed men he surrounds himself with every time he leaves his bedroom in the White House? How about Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi or Joe Biden?

Teachers should never be required to carry a firearm, nor should any citizen. We are free to choose to own and carry a firearm if we choose to do that. We are not compelled by the Constitution to keep and bear arms; we are guaranteed that right, if we so choose.

In my opinion, no school child should ever have to watch his teacher shoot anyone. There are more simple solutions. Locks on the classroom doors would stop most people from entering a classroom without permission. Locks on the schools entrance door would be a great help. Putting a fence around the school with a one-way lock at the gate would be a simple solution.

Requiring a teacher to arm herself is not the solution.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Procura, I've posted this before. Did you ever bother to read it?

I have a friend who is an expert on gangs in Utah. He works with the Utah Attorney General's office. He has some serious concerns with the lack of adequate background checks, the gun show loophole, and the fact that before being prohibited from possessing a gun, a person must have been convicted of a felony.

According to him, at least two thirds of gang members cannot be restricted from packing. Most have fairly extensive records of misdemeanors, but no felonies -- yet. It is not unusual for police agencies to have to return weapons to gang bangers because their possession of the weapon is permitted under current law and the Second Amendment. Because there is no registration of gun serial numbers, there is no way of learning if the gun has been stolen.

He also points out that in almost every case of a gun being used in domestic violence, the gun was lawfully possessed by the shooter. Even though the shooter may have had a long history of previous violence, nothing can be done until he crosses the line from misdemeanor to felony.

procuradorfiscal
Tooele, UT

Re: "Requiring a teacher to arm herself is not the solution."

Agreed. But forcing a teacher NOT to arm herself isn't, either.

Agreed, no child SHOULD be forced to watch a teacher shoot someone. But, in a case like Sandy Hook, we don't get a vote. The person creating the situation is not the teacher, it's the deranged miscreant.

And, we should be able to agree it's better, when a criminal forces a child to witness carnage, that he watch the teacher shoot the criminal, than to be forced to watch the criminal shoot the teacher, then him.

Locks on doors? Sure. Lockable fence around the school? Sure.

But, unless schools have changed since I worked my way through a couple years of college as a school custodian, they already have 'em.

They're not enough.

Willing teachers, willing to undergo necessary training, willing to carry concealed, and willing -- as was the Sandy Hook principal -- to protect kids at all costs, should be permitted the tools to do so.

Not made defenseless victims by operation of law.

Grundle
West Jordan, UT

Re:procuradorfiscal

"Not made defenseless victims by operation of law."

Wow...great line!!!

procuradorfiscal
Tooele, UT

Re: "Procura, I've posted this before."

Yeah, I'm listening. Your solution is what?

Disarm bad guys? We all know how well that works.

There are several problems with your suggestion, besides the obvious one -- bad guys don't obey the law. So your new "background" check law would only disarm good guys.

Additionally, what do you mean by "background check?" The devil's always in the details, and liberals are WAY short on those. How long would they take? Who decides whether your "background" is clean? What other use will be made of the submitted information?

In the past, "background" checks were used to disqualify Black voters. How do we assure those abuses don't resurface with your suggestion?

What in my "background" might disqualify me? Felonies already do. What about a traffic ticket? How about Tim DeChristopher's "civil disobedience?" How about Prozac use? Alcohol use?

What if I were just opposed to the President's latest executive order?

To many liberals, the most telling "background" flaw is that I want to own a gun.

I'm listening -- where's your cutoff?

Salsa Libre
Provo, UT

Mass shootings provide for NRA recruitment and fund-raising events with the added benefit of selling more guns to the benefit of the gun manufacturer's association.

The victims of these shootings are acceptable collateral damage.

To say the the NRA deplores these events is to detract from its business model. The more who are killed, the greater the generated fear, the better the NRA does.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah
Open Minded Mormon (aka LDS Liberal),

Scared and extremely insecure? How did you reach that conclusion?

We are not compelled by the Constitution to keep and bear arms; we are guaranteed that right, if we so choose.

=============

Tell me Mike --
Does the Constitution guartantee the right to buy and sell arms?
A: No. Only to "Keep and Bare" them. It makes NO mention of any mythical guarateed right to sell or purchase anything.
So, the Govenment CAN constitutionally restrict and regulate their sale and circulation.
They just can't Ghestapo like knock on your door and confisgate what you already have in your possesion.
That is what "infriged" means.

Unless you want to amendment the constituion and spell out "purchase and sale of" in addition to the right "to keep and bare" -- you will loose this one.

BTW - I'm scared and feel insecre, that's why I have them. I'm fearful of Domestic enemies vigilanty mob rule types who seek to to over throw our Country. Not the Chinese, North Koreans or the United States of America like you paranoid far-right-wingers.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

procuradorfiscal,

I have 23 grandchildren, meaning that I'm often invited to visit their classrooms and their schools. Not once have I been stopped when entering a school. Not once was any outside door or classroom door locked. Not once did anyone from the school question my presence in that school.

Is that security? None of the teachers or principles or office personnel knew who I was.

Some schools had a flyer taped to their front door asking all visitors to check-in at the office. I always asked if I needed to check in. Usually I was asked if I was there for a program or to visit a grandchild. Not once was I asked to sign any kind of register. Not once was I asked for I.D.

Before deciding that every school is a war zone, how about just accounting for anyone who enters who is no a teacher or a student? How about using the locks that are already on the doors? How about making every visitor detour through a secured office area before entering into the school?

Moderate
Salt Lake City, UT

procuradorfiscal says "Willing teachers, willing to undergo necessary training, willing to carry concealed ... should be permitted the tools to do so."

Agreed, but you left off a very key point "willing to accept the responsibility".
The teacher must face consequences if they lose control of their gun.

I can imagine a student getting a hold of the teacher's gun as a prank.
That teacher should face discipline.
Worse to imagine a student getting the teacher's gun and firing off a round.
That teacher should be fired.
Worse to imagine a student getting the gun and accidentally shooting another student.
That teacher should face criminal charges and jail.
Worse to image a student getting the gun and killing another student.
That teacher should face life in prison, or perhaps the death penalty.

Gruesome examples, yet very possible because you've allowed a gun in the classroom.
If a teacher is willing to accept the consequences, then let them carry.

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