Email letters, March 6, 2013

Assault weapons supporters offer only weak arguments

I haven’t heard a single good argument from gun advocates as to why ordinary citizens need assault weapons or high-magazine clips. One of their arguments is that many law-abiding citizens have these weapons and ammo, they use them responsibly and they should not have their weapons taken away.

This is not a good argument because these weapons typically fall into the hands of people who mean to do harm. Even law-abiding citizens go ballistic, as we have seen in recent mass shootings.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., offered another lame defense of these weapons at a recent gun hearing in Washington in which he claimed that most gun violence is caused by handguns and not by assault weapons and that therefore it wouldn’t make much sense to ban them.

Well, duh. There are way more handguns than assault weapons. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t ban assault weapons.

The assault weapon is the weapon of choice for these mass shootings, and it has the ability to cause mass carnage in one single usage. If one is able to fire off 20-30 rounds of ammo without having to reload, one causes much more damage than a handgun with 6-10 rounds.

I’m amazed at how Republicans and the gun nuts support putting really bad things out in world, such as assault weapons. Then, once the cat is out of the bag, they argue that “well, since there are so many assault weapons out there now, it’s a waste of time to try and ban all of them or even to stop making them.”

No, it’s not a waste of time. It just takes the will to do so.

JIM CIHA
Grand Junction

Proposed gun legislation would be costly, unfair

As a local federally licensed gun dealer, I am dismayed by the current gun debate going on at the Capitol in Denver. It seems that these seven proposals have moved one step closer to becoming law. First off, not one of these proposals would have done anything to prevent or reduce any of the violent acts that have unfortunately happened in our state or elsewhere.

Secondly, as reported in the Sentinel’s March 5 edition, the voting is strictly being cast down party lines. Shouldn’t our elected party officials vote according to the wishes of their constituents instead of how their political party “orders” them to vote?

If these proposals are for the good of the people of Colorado, how can one party vote wholly for it and another wholly against it?

Another cause for concern to my business and me are two of the proposals that have the ability to financially hurt my customers and me. The first is SB196 that could hold my business liable for selling an “assault weapon” that is used in some future crime.

As a licensed gun dealer, I make sure not one weapon leaves my premises unless the purchaser passes a background check conducted by the Colorado Bureau of Investigations and is found to be legally able to own that firearm. Why should my business be held liable for something that could happen several years after it legally left my store?

Plus the wording is too vague as to what an “assault weapon” is and includes many hunting and sporting weapons that have nothing to do with what most logical people would assume to be classified in that way.

The next cause for concern is HB 1228. They want to start charging for the above-mentioned check that I am required to perform every time a firearm leaves my business.

The logic is that someone can buy a gun he or she can pay another $10 for this check. That may or may not be true when purchasing a firearm but consider this: I am a pawnbroker. If you get a loan from me on a firearm, that you legally own, you must pass the background check to get that weapon back when you redeem the loan.

What that would do is basically double a person’s expense to get his or her weapon back if borrowing $100 for 30 days.

Does doubling the cost to those who can least afford it make any sense? If you double the expense of pawning a gun to my customers and the customers of every pawn business in Colorado, they will use something else to help them make ends meet rather than pawn their firearms.

Politicians should think about this: Would you rather have those firearms out on the street or locked up in the gun vault safely in my business?

Short-sighted, knee-jerk reactions rarely prove beneficial.

BRIAN LANGFITT
Grand Junction

Fences around schools may offer effective security

The school district seems to be interested in safety measures that are going to have a significant budgetary impact. I have another idea.

What about an airport-like security fence around the property? Staffed gates would control access. Most schools already have fencing around part of their property. Using the airport black color could lessen the visual impact.

Gates could be positioned and used according to the need at the times of day. The fence might be less expensive to install, control and maintain than electric door locks and increased security staff. The look would not be ideal, but it would limit access to the campus while providing a way to negate some of the concerns over all the doors in all the buildings.

DOUGLAS R. STARK

Grand Junction

Outsiders on both coasts want to disarm Coloradans

Who are these guys? Are we living in Colorado or New York or Arizona? Good heavens, people. Wake up and smell the roses. Why would all these folks come to Colorado to support violating our constitutional rights by grabbing our guns?

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I pray for you. I doubt Bloomberg, Biden or Gabby really care about the people of Colorado. They just want to try to disarm another state.

Hey, I got an idea. Let’s load up a bunch of horses, cows and sheep in trucks and take them to New York City to graze in Central Park for a while. My guess is some of those New Yorkers would have a fit, because those hicks and hillbillies from Colorado have the gall to bring those filthy animals to the city to change their way of living.

Let’s face it, folks. There is a lot of animal “stuff” to go around on this issue. Guns are a way of life in the West. Live with it.

You can pass all the laws you want, and I will bet you won’t see a line of folks giving up their guns. If you can’t live with it, move your little self out on the East Coast where they are seriously working at disarming law-abiding citizens.

If that doesn’t work, move yourself to the Left Coast (California). Those hippies and yippies out there sure know how to run a state.

Just leave us alone, and let the smart folks of Colorado work out their own rules for living.

JAMES O’MALLEY
Grand Junction

Ignoring oil shale potential an expensive mistake for U.S.

It seems insane to me that we would pursue policies that direct scarce public dollars – even scarcer under the sequester – toward so-called “renewables,” which experts point out cannot even keep pace with demand, while at the same time telling private industry that it cannot invest its own money into oil shale, an alternative energy source that provides a proven, high-density fuel off a relatively small amount of acreage.

Our nation is the only one in the world that contains oil shale resources – massive amounts at that – and yet is still doing nothing to try to develop them.

Instead we seem content to throw tax dollars at subsidizing dead-end, environmentalist pet projects such as biofuel, which uses up enormous amounts of water, takes land out of food production and drives up food costs. Or we finance solar projects that time and again have shown themselves to be financial disasters that fall far short of the wishful hopes of their backers and result in millions of taxpayer dollars being wasted, as in the case of Solyndra.

Isn’t it time we got our priorities straight and allowed private investment to develop our oil shale?

KASEY SMOLHA
Fruita

Media swings left as government waste continues

Watching the news, I think it is nice to see the Obama rhetoric being spat out. Sequestration is just another way to get people to pay attention to what he wants you to hear and not facts.

Fact: The federal budget office put out the real number at $44 billion. These cuts are between 1.2 and 2 percent of the budget and were agreed upon by the president on the last debt-ceiling debacle.

Fact: The government assistance office put out a report of wasted programs from last year totaling 125 billion American tax dollars.

Seems to me that the highly educated morons that we elected to run this country have forgotten fundamental math. Found the problem, just need to apply these new numbers along with 4 percent cost savings. How did I do?

If you don’t believe that the media is not swinging left, then please tell me why we don’t see a death toll of soldiers dying overseas? We saw it
every night with Bush in office.

Think about it, folks. We are being lied to daily.

MIKE PARKER
Fruita

State legislators’ proposed gun laws would only enslave citizens

Here we go again. The barn door is open, and all the horses are out. So, what to do, why don’t we pass a law that prohibits us from having barn doors that open?

That is exactly what our state government is doing right now with this so-called gun control. I just wish that these so-called lawmakers would take some time and think of what they are doing. Restricting us from having our guns is going to make slaves out of us.

Just think about it. If the slaves down south had guns, they would not be slaves. If the millions of people in Europe had guns, Hitler would not have murdered millions and run amok in Europe. All you have to do is open a history book and read about the countries that took guns away from their free citizens. Shortly afterward, they were turned into slaves and/or murdered.

I just don’t know what is happening here in Colorado. Years ago we were able to own guns and go where we wanted to enjoy life without all these unnecessary laws—laws that infringe on our freedom. Who gave our legislators the right to pass laws that say it is all right to smoke pot but not a Camel?

I hope that they pass the gun law and that the gun magazine company here in Colorado packs up and moves. I will still buy my gun magazines from them, but by mail.

What about the $85 million and the 400 jobs lost here when they do? Maybe our lawmakers can subsidize them.

FRANK TRANCHINA
Delta

 

 

 



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