Letters: Arguments condoning gun freedom often make no senseI have been reading a lot on gun control in the weeks since the Sandy Hook massacre. It’s interesting to read both sides of the argument. My stance is against, but for what it’s worth, I’d like to comment on a couple editorials in the Globe recently.
By: Deb Herrick, Worthington, Worthington Daily Globe
I have been reading a lot on gun control in the weeks since the Sandy Hook massacre. It’s interesting to read both sides of the argument. My stance is against, but for what it’s worth, I’d like to comment on a couple editorials in the Globe recently.
Mr. Pitts, I want to commend you for a wonderful editorial. Miss Wallace, yours was excellent, also. I just read Jeff Beman’s and I have to laugh at some of his arguments, just as I do at others that condone gun freedom. It really doesn’t matter what type of guns there are. They are only made for one thing. This inanimate object would look fine in a case where no one had access, but people use them. To kill. That’s the only reason they were made in the first place. Whether it be animals or people, that’s their sole purpose and no one can argue that.
Regarding the second amendment: if you eliminate “the right of the people to keep and bear arms,” which I feel has been taken out of context again and again, it would read thus: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, shall not be infringed.” Well regulated, not well armed. Since that line didn’t include “bear arms,” I believe they inserted the “people” phrase as meaning to give our militia, as a whole, the right to have weapons.
I believe people have read more into the amendment than was ever intended. The focus for the NRA and its supporters seems to be only that little inserted “the right of the people to keep and bear arms.” I believe the men who wrote this amendment meant it to mean an armed “militia” made up of “the people,” in the event of conflict, should be free to bear arms. Or, to be more clear, they should have used “those” instead of “the.” Those was not a common word then.
We already have a well armed militia: the Army, Navy, Air Force, National Guard, Marines. Why do gun supporters always forget about an armed “militia” and focus on “the people” as meaning each individual? The amendment clearly does not say every individual should be able to keep and bear arms. If that was the meaning, why have a militia at all?
Mr. Beman, it appears to me as though taking guns away from law-abiding people as well as crooks, criminals and crazies is not possible. When I saw the front page article on how guns are selling out everywhere, I got a pit in my stomach. How many individuals that I encounter in our community are carrying a weapon? If an individual gets angry at me — say road rage — how do I know I’m not going to be blown to bits in an instant of angry retaliation? How do I know if my neighbor owns a gun? How many arguments between neighbors have we heard of in our community? Who’s to say whether or not that neighbor, in a fit of anger, will pull out his gun and a life is lost over a shared parcel of land?
How do we truly know when a “law abiding” citizen will suddenly reach an exploding point and do like the Sandy Hook killer did? Or any of the other murderers of late? How can we tell when a good student will explode? How do we know when a disgruntled worker will go over the edge and blow co-workers or bosses away? No one can tell what makes the next person tip over that border between “law abiding” and murderer. Can you tell by looking at someone’s face that they will eventually kill?
It isn’t just mentally ill people we need to worry about, it’s those who suddenly cross over the border of responsible gun ownership. What difference does a background check make when we have no control over who goes over the edge in the spur of a moment? How do you know you would be quick enough to pull out a weapon before you are gunned down by an armed individual?
We still don’t know the reasons behind the Sandy Hook killing. It makes no sense to us. But a former troubled but law-abiding citizen killed 26 individuals, and that massacre broke the heart of America to the point of finally wanting to do something about all the guns in the hands of too many. It’s always after the fact that the murderers are found competent or incompetent, insane or dead. If Adam Lanza’s mother hadn’t been able to collect weapons she, 20 children and six teachers would be alive today.
You asked, Mr. Beman, that we put reason in front of fear. Don’t you ever go to the mall or the theater or the gas station or the school and, just for an instant, feel a flicker of fear? Personally, as a member of a family of hunters, I am afraid of guns. I can’t reason — I can’t grasp, for other than putting meat on our tables or for protection by our Armed Forces, why we need them at all. If we continue on the road gun supporters want, we will begin living in a country of Hatfields and McCoys where gun owners decide on their own form of justice by using them against one another, justifying it as second amendment rights to defend oneself.
Lastly, I chuckled at your reference to an arsonist. There are always comparisons of “what if” such and such kills . . . “shall we outlaw. . .” Let’s get real. Knives kill people, but we need them. Fire kills people, but we need it. The argument can go on and on. There are things that are necessary to life. Guns aren’t one of them.