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The New Era Paper
Sweet Home, Oregon
August 8, 2012     The New Era Paper
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August 8, 2012

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August 8, 2012 COMMUNITY OPINION Page ,5 LF .TTr .RS TO TtlE EDITOR The law-abiding gun owner side How about rest of me takes even greater offense to of the numbers? her statement that she feels all gun owners are bad or as she states, Editor: "only bad people own guns." The Re: "Guns 'R' Us and we pay Sweet Home community must have the price" (Aug. 1), statistics are a at least a 70-85 percent instance of great way to get your point across gun ownership so she is surrounded and I applaud Ms. Daiute's re- by bad people. search. As a bit of irony she believes She could also have pointed that combat veterans should be out that between 200t and 2010 leading the cause to ban firearms. there were 400,778 automobile re- You know why they, by and large, lated deaths. We should ban auto~ don't? Because they have been to mobiles, the messed-up countries where the Smoking kills 443,000 annu- dictatorships have taken away the ally. An estimated 5 million who citizens' guns and seen that there, were 0-17 in 1995 could die prema- in fact, only the bad people have the turely from tobacco-related causes. guns. We spend an estimated $200 billion That's why we have to spend in health care costs related to to- trillions of dollars going in and bacco use. We should ban tobacco cleaning up their mess while sac- products, rificing our soldiers' precious lives In 2001 alone, 775,766 deaths because they have no means of pro- were attributable to alcohol use. tecting or defending themselves. Of those 4,554 were under 21 and Only the law-abiding follow the 13,674 were. in a motor vehicle. We laws; this is elementary thinking should ban alcohol use. here. We haven't even begun to to- Giving Bill Clinton's ineffec- tal the deaths from drug-related tual gun/high capacity magazine causes, ban credit for a reduction in crime Banning something is not is laughable. All that it really did the way to solve the problem. We was make it more expensive to ob- need responsible adult role models tain still perfectly legal firearms and to teach right and wrong ,to teach magazines. safety and responsibility in these If anything, it was a hindrance matters, whether it be guns, automo- to crime fighting as it made it much biles, alcohol, tobacco, or any other harder for police officers to obtain area in their lives, high-capacity magazines to fight We need law enforcement and crime with. The red tape involved in judicial officials to enforce the cur- doing this discouraged many officers rent laws and make the penalties into just giving up on the process. I stiffer So people realize the conse- saw it with my own eyes many times quences of their actions, over. It lasted for 10 years and when I have no problem with gun it expired there was virtually no one owners who obtained their guns le- interested in renewing it because of gally and use them responsibly. I its utter uselessness and was a prov- have no problem with people who en failure in every way. own cars and have them licensed and The statistics thrown around are insured legally and drive responsi- very misleading. First of alll most of bly. I have no problem with people the quoted ones are from the CDC. who have an occasional drink and This organization is as anti-gun as do not become intoxicated. (Smok- the NRA is pro. ing and drugs I do have a problem Anyone under 18 is considered with ) a "child" in these statistics. Homi- I don't want to take away peo- cides are not broken down into jus- pie's fights to own guns, automo- tifiable and non-, so every 17-year- biles, cameras, cell phones or any old gang-banger shot by a police other commodities. What I would officer or law-abiding citizen in self like is guidelines that are enforced to defense is considered a "homicide." promote the safe use of these things If that doesn't skew the facts, I for the protection of everyone, don't know what does! Inter-gang Don Austin homicides are also not taken into Sweet Home account, rightly or wrongly. I also don't understand compar- Argument against ing the number of pre-schoolers to police officers as some kind of sta- guns is offensive tistic. She quotes "those same two years" but doesn't specify which Editor: two years. There are 26.7 million As a lifelong gun owner who children up to the age of 5 in the has never used a firearm inappropri- U.S. and around 800,000 law en- ately, like 99.9 percent of us, I can't forcement officers. help but be offended by Ms. Diane So out of 26,700,000 children Daiute's letter to the editor in the roughly 86 to 87 children were trag- August 1st edition of The New Era. ically killed with firearms, per year, Actually, as a human being, I am of- in some random two-year, span, a fended, terrible thing. According to her sta- She stated that Americans don't tistics, out of the 800,000 police of- care about or grieve for the children ricers, 89 were killed in the line of killed in gun-related deaths. What! duty. I don't know a single person who That is the most misleading sta- doesn't grieve over the loss of a tistic quoted by Ms. Daiute. That's child, accidental or otherwise! 44 to 45 per year but how many were I grieve for any and every child killed by firearms? Accidents, espe- lost to any accident, whether a car cially traffic accidents, have been the accident, drowning in a bucket or a leading cause of death for police of- pool, Stuck in household furniture, ricers in the line of duty until 2011. I run over by a lawnmower, backed am saddened by any innocent death over by a delivery truck, or a bike or but the percentages hardly suggest skateboard accident, an epidemic justifying the sacrifice It is horrible under any circum- of a constitutional right. The per- stances, but terrible accidents hap- centage of pre-schoolers killed by pen. a firearm each year Comes out to 0.0000032 percent. And for police officers it is 0.000055 percent. Also, why does the gun get the blame? It is an inanimate object. When a drunk driver kills someone, no one blames the car. Someone could do a lot more damage with a Prius than an AR-15 and would be a 1o! harder to stop. If the gun doesn't get the blame, the NRA does, as proven by Ms. Daiute's letter. The NRA trains 1,300 law enforcement officers each year. That hardly suggests as Ms. Daiute does, that "they have their little gun safety classes, etc." In the state of Oregon, as well as most others, you must take hand- gun training in order to get a Con- cealed Handgun License from an NRA-certified instructor. The NRA is the acknowledged authority on firearms training. The NRA also has an excellent gun safety program for children, called the Eddie Eagle Program, which could all but eliminate these accidents in the first place. It is com- pletely free to any school or orga- nization because it is paid forby us evil NRA members. This program has no political aspirations. It simply tells the child that, if they find a gun: don't touch it, leave the area and tell an adult. It is as simple as that but it is not used enough because of politics. Our schools inform our chil- dren about drugs, alcohol, smok: ing, dangerous driving and sex-ed but nothing about guns and then we wonder why accidents happen. It's mind numbingly ignorant. Now, for some real, plain-as -the-nose-on-your-face numbers. According to a year 2000 study and survey/poll published in the Jour- nal of Quantitative Criminology, U.S. civilians use firearms to de- fend themselves from crime at least 989,883 times per year. Another 1994 survey, by the CDC, found that Americans use firearms to frighten away intruders breaking into their homes 489,000 times per year. Even they couldn't deny reality. Ms. Daiute, you ask "what's more important to me - my chil- dren or my guns?" I'll take the 0.0000032% chance of an acci- dent (actually a lot less than that, since my children have been taught gun safety practically from birth) against the fact that I am in the group that has used my gun to stop criminals from plying their trade, and so have innumerable people I know very well. Guns in the hands of law-abid- ing citizens stop crime, it's an abso- lute fact! There was also some obscure reference made about the set- tiers along the Oregon Trail killing themselves off with their shoo- tin' irons faster than hostile Indi- ans could do it. I doubt that statistic as much as your other skewed ones, but I do believe that the number of Settlers killed by hostiles was low and I know why: They had guns! Jeff Hutchins Corvallis 'Twisted' truth in gun argument Editor: In response to Ms. Daiute's letter about how bad guns are, and how we should not have the right to own one, I would like to tell her more facts, since she has twisted the truth. Cities such as Chicago and New York have the strictest gun laws, yet the highest crime and murder rates in the world. Crimi- nals don't normally try to attack or commit a crime against someone who might have a gun to protect themselves. The idea of taking guns away from the law-abiding citizens an- gers me. It would have my dad, who happened to carry a rifle in Europe during World War Ilto protect that right and your right for free speech. If he were alive today and knew the Democrats were trying to take that right away, murder unborn babies and make marriage available to homosexuals, he would have changed parties, as I have. Your idea that murders only oc- curred during the Reagan and Bush years is idiotic. How many lives were saved by law-abiding citizens owning guns during those 30 years you do not tell us. As far as settlers dying form their guns, how many would have died from Indians and outlaws without having a gun? Or how many thousands would have died of starvation without a gun? It's ludicrous that anyone would think that families traveling out west would be safer without a gun. I have to tell you, Ms. Daiute, that the No. 1 cause~f death for ba- bies is not guns, but abortion. Lib- erals are only liberal until someone disagrees with them. As far as owning guns, thou- sands have sacrificed for our free- doms, such as our Second Amend- ment right. This is where I am pro-choice. I choose to own a gun. If you do not, that's fine with me. Dennis Huenergardt Sweet Home Hey, if you don't want a gun, fine Editor: Did you know that Swiss gov- ernment issues every household a gun and trains every adult that they issue a gun to how to use that gun? Switzerland had lowest gun-relat- ed crime rate in the world. Hmmm. Maybe we need more guns and less gun control. There were 56 million de- fenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th century, all in the name of gun control. Most guns that are used to commit a crime is done illegally. Gun laws do not stop any one who is determined to commit a crime. More than 2 million times a year people have used a gun to stop violence, 90 percent of the time a crime is stopped before it is com- mitted when confronted by an indi- vidual brandishing a gun. The liberals would love to strip Americans of their guns be- cause people with guns are. citizens and without guns they are subjects and subjects are easier to control than citizens. The "right to choose" that the liberals are so vocal about protect- ing when it comes to killing unborn children, choosing who marries and what to protest does not seem to apply when it comes to owning a gun. They say: "If you don't want to have an abortion, don't have one, if you don't believe in same- sex marriage, don't marry the same sex. If you don't believe in some- thing enough to go out and protest, then don't go protest. But don't deny me the right to an abortion, to marry whom I choose, or the right to protest." So I say, if you don't believe in owning guns don't buy one and please don't call someone who has a gun to defend you if you are in some type of danger. For some reason the liberals hate the fact that someone might have a different opinion than they do so that person needs to be pun- ished by more laws and more regu- lations. For some reason they can't just agree to disagree without mak- ing it all personal. I wonder if Diane has ever wondered how many people are still alive because someone had a gun to protect them from harm. How many children are alive be- cause Mom or Dad knew how and did use a gun to protect them from predators of all kinds? I wonder if she knows how many children did not starve to death because they had a dad or mom who hunted and "brought home the bacon," so to speak? I wonder if she knows how many guns the Secret Service has so it can protect President Obama? If you take all the guns away from Amoricans, who will protect you when you need it? You can bet it won't be this present administration and his pack of do-gooders. They won't even enforce the present laws on immigration or voter intimidation. Jeani West Sweet Home 11 t II D TIMT ,4PP'a ?