Letters to the Editor

Your views in 250 words or less

Tag: newtown

April
22nd

GUNS: Silly argument against background checks

Re: “Senators ignore American public on background checks” (editorial, 4-19).

The fact that Congress was unable to pass a bill simply expanding background checks for gun purchases, following the massacre of 20 young children, is disheartening and shameful. The idea that we shouldn’t pass any level of gun reform whatsoever because criminals don’t obey laws is an absurd logic, and it would never be an acceptable argument against any form of crime reduction not directly related to guns.

There will always be people who drive drunk, steal, burglarize, manufacture drugs, commit arson, rape, kill, etc. So does that mean

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Feb.
1st

GUNS: Demand meaningful limits now

Our representatives in Washington, D.C., are facing a critical decision. Will they stand up to powerful gun lobbyists and support legislation to curb the gun violence plaguing our nation? Or will they accept the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School as status quo?

I recently asked Congressman Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor, this question. I found his reply less than satisfactory.

“The path forward should be focused on evidence-based steps that will actually improve public safety and prevent future tragedies,” he stated in a letter. Those steps, in his view, include cracking down on gun trafficking, improving mental health services and

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Jan.
9th

GUNS: Lessons from Kennesaw and Harvard

Kennesaw, Ga., is the antithesis of a gun-free zone (a target-rich environment). A 1982 ordinance required all households to own and maintain a gun. Crime dropped dramatically. Today, Kennesaw’s violent crime rate is only 15 percent of the national crime rate (cityrating.com) and 12 percent of Tacoma’s. Kennesaw has been murder-free for decades.

The Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy studied the issue worldwide. It found that gun ownership has an inverse relationship to crime. Luxembourg, where guns are banned, has a murder rate 10 times that of Germany, where the are 30,000 guns per 100,000 population.

In the

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Dec.
31st

GUNS: Enforce laws already on the books

The recent hysteria concerning gun laws after the Newtown shooting fails to address a simple legal premise: There are far too many gun laws already on the books that prosecutors and judges alike fail to enforce.

If a convicted felon is caught with a firearm, that felon is likely to receive little or no jail time even though federal sentencing guidelines recommend five years of prison time.

I understand that revisiting current gun laws has no one single solution. However, as a society, we can start by getting tougher on crime when it comes to gun law enforcement. Even if

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Dec.
27th

SHOOTING: How do we resolve to do better?

As a mother and teacher, I join America in being deeply troubled that a human being can stand in front of children and shoot. I have heard many people ask where God was on Dec. 14 and place blame. The finger points at the human heart, and laws won’t change that. We don’t know much about the Lanza family, but I would like to suggest we consider the following points as we make our resolutions.

• Men need to make their wife and children their paramount responsibility. There is no safer place for a child than in a family where

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Dec.
24th

GUNS: NRA leader makes ignorant statement

Is Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president of the NRA, naive or does he think we’re all stupid when he says, “The only thing stopping a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun”?

There are two sides to every coin. Has he ever heard of a police officer (the “good guy with a gun”) being killed by a “bad guy with a gun”?

Which police officers do you think are going to be assigned to the elementary schools in your town? Not the young, energetic officers, who are needed out on the streets to protect the

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Dec.
24th

MENTAL HEALTH: Connecticut Mass Killing’s First Victim

Re: The shootings in Newtown, Conn.

My sympathy is with the victims’ families. We shouldn’t forget Nancy Lanza, the mentally ill shooter’s mother. She wasn’t the first and unfortunately won’t be the last person killed by a mentally ill relative.

I empathize with her because I too am the parent of a mentally ill adult. Denial comes first. This can’t be happening to us. Your child may deny being ill and resist or reject treatment.

Next you cope. You struggle daily to help your child while facing a host of difficult problems.

First, you don’t know where to get help.

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Dec.
24th

GUNS: Australian gun laws were misrepresented

I am a visitor from Australia, here with my wife. It is our fourth visit to Tacoma, and we enjoy this city and country.

I write to take issue with the writer of “Dead children used as political pawns” (letter, 12-23). He writes about gun laws in Australia and the massacre that occurred in Tasmania in 1996 – which, like the recent one in Newtown, Conn., took many innocent lives.

To say that “anti-gun activists” were ready and waiting for “the perfect tragedy to enact their desired change” is to misrepresent the facts and the Australian people.

No Australians

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