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Forum, Aug. 28: Gun control laws have done, and will do, nothing to help


Tuesday, August 27, 2019
Gun control laws have done, and will do, nothing to help

When (or might I say, if?) President Donald Trump has a “sit-down” with the Democratic Party leadership, two incidents might be thrown into the discussion mix.

In Philadelphia, six police officers were wounded when narcotics officers attempted to serve a warrant and a shooter opened fire on the officers and those responding to the call for help.

Philadelphia has strict gun control laws. I guess those laws didn’t prevent this crime.

In Fresno, Calif., a 16-year-old carrying a loaded semi-automatic handgun and loaded magazine was arrested at a music video shoot. Police determined that the gun was stolen five years ago.

I guess California’s strict gun control laws didn’t help in that case, either.

This is my point. Law-abiding citizens will follow all the rules and restrictions and requirements a government can concoct. Neither they nor the National Rifle Association are the problem. The criminals and those bent on committing a crime won’t worry about background checks, enhanced or otherwise, or waiting periods or restrictions on types of firearms or bullets or magazines. They’ll find what they want on the street and do the deed.

There are high-profile names associated with “gun control” advocacy. These people lead the chants and protests: “Do something,” they yell.

To my knowledge, no one has said what that “something” is. How is their “something” better than what is already on the books? And, more important, what would that “something” do to prevent all of the incidents we’ve seen in the past?

The Democratic Party, and the “gun control” advocates and their shills and sycophants, are creating a fairly tale and a facade that would do Hollywood proud.

However, when their creation collapses, as it most likely will, Americans will sit in wonderment at the monumental failure foisted on them.

ALAN TANENBAUM

Grantham

Stay out of politics, Special Needs Support Center

The acknowledgment from the Special Needs Support Center of my recent donation stated: “With your support we are proud to co-create a community where all people with special needs, and their families, have the opportunity and support to achieve their fullest potential.”

A community is a group of people with a shared interest in a specific locality (the Upper Valley, for example). So I was disappointed learn in an article in the Valley News about a protest by activists in opposition to immigration policy on the southern border (“Upper Valley activists to protest separations,” July 11). The Special Needs Support Center was mentioned in the article as it had just released a public statement decrying the policy.

Though the support center denies it was a political statement because it claims not to get involved in political events, the timing was suspect. The protest was planned in advance and a support center representative talked with the newspaper before the protest.

Thus it was known that the public statement would be used in support of a political activity.

It is disappointing that the Special Needs Support Center’s board, before releasing the statement, did not question how such a statement would help the center’s clients and their families. Perception is important, and that statement had the potential to turn off donors and potential donors and thus was counterproductive. This is a misstep for a nonprofit organization.

It appears the organization and its clients were used as pawns to support the political agenda of the board.

My donation was not made to support a political action committee. The support center’s clients are here in the Upper Valley and not the southern border.

I wrote saying they should issue an apology to their donors and client families and stick to their knitting — caring for the special needs of Upper Valley clients. This hasn’t happened yet.

DAVE CIOFFI

Etna

Religious hypocrisy in the service of a ‘Big Picture’

I have to disagree with Robert M. Baum (“Trump puts religion in jeopardy,” Aug. 18).

Religion is not about “serving God by working on behalf of the poor and the vulnerable.” It’s about social control and terrifying people into ignoring the still small voice that ought to guide each of us.

There should be no surprise in someone like Franklin Graham spouting rather vile nonsense. In this secular nation of ours, successive presidents betrayed the heart of America by calling his father “America’s preacher.” Slippery slope indeed.

There are certain standards of behavior that are almost universally acknowledged to be true: killing is wrong; stealing is wrong; hurting the weaker among us is wrong.

Then religion comes along and tells us all the reasons it’s necessary to kill our fellow human beings, or strong-arm them into giving up a portion or all of their property, or scourge disobedient children and unsubmissive wives.

God isn’t found in written-down stuff — I’ll bet my soul on that.

If God were, an awful lot of people would get their hands scorched from holding holy books on their holy days after doing awful things all week in the apparently secure belief that God can’t see what they’re up to.

President Donald Trump really isn’t the problem. It’s the dazzling hypocrisy of those who’ll accept any level of wretchedness in the service of furthering some imagined Big Picture.

SARAH CRYSL AKHTAR

Lebanon