LETTERS: Good guys can’t prevent an ambush

To the editor:

The assertion by National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre that a good guy with a gun will stop a bad guy with a gun was debunked by the June 8 events in Las Vegas, in which two bad guys gunned down two armed police officers and a lawfully armed good Samaritan. The fact is that a good guy cannot be expected to prevent a bad guy from using guns in a surprise attack, as occurred in these shootings. The two armed police officers were ambushed while calmly eating their lunch at a restaurant, and the private citizen was ambushed from behind at a Wal-Mart.

Moreover, the presence of armed police officers or armed security guards is hardly an effective deterrent to an attacker who is willing to die by suicide or from opposing gunfire in the course of perpetrating the attack. Once the carnage has begun, the best that an armed good guy can do is to confront the perpetrator and hopefully limit the number of additional injuries and deaths. So, a good guy with a gun is the solution only if the NRA is willing to accept ambushes at schools, movie theaters, restaurants, etc., as a way of life, and only if the meager goal of the NRA and society is to prevent some unnecessary deaths.

However, if society’s ultimate goal is to prevent all unnecessary deaths, then the solution is to keep guns out of the hands of people who are so angry, troubled, demented, mentally ill and/or misguided that they would use guns to ambush innocent people, and are themselves willing to die in the process.



Shooters’ motives

To the editor:

In the aftermath of the shooting deaths of two Metro police officers and a civilian, the Review-Journal’s front-page headline on June 10 blared out: “Shooters’ motives remain unclear.” I disagree. To me, the reason was crystal clear: They were both nuts. What other reason can there be for people to kill their fellow human beings?

The senseless deaths of these three men were a travesty, and the losses will be mourned by their families and the citizens of Las Vegas. I applaud the bravery of Joseph Wilcox, the private citizen who tried to defend his fellow man and, in doing so, was shot down by a lunatic woman on a psychotic journey.

As a former police officer with two sons in law enforcement here in Nevada, I am especially saddened by the deaths of brother police officers, Igor Soldo and Alyn Beck, two courageous men who were gunned down in the prime of their young lives by the two cowardly assassins. I am proud to see Nevadans demonstrating support for the fallen officers and their families during this difficult and terrible time.

We must never lose sight of the dangers and risk these young men and women in law enforcement face on a daily basis. My sincere condolences to all of the families. It is indeed a sad time.



Disappointing primary

To the editor:

As newcomers and first-time voters in Nevada, my wife and I were dismayed at the lack of information we could gather regarding the candidates running for the various offices.

We suspect that this lack of information contributed to the low voter turnout. Does one vote for the person with the biggest sign? Are there any plans to provide information to voters regarding a candidate’s qualifications and experience?

Thanks to the Review-Journal website for saving us by providing links to election information. We appreciate the thoroughness of your reporting, particularly by Rachel Crosby (“Absence of ‘hot races’ may have resulted in low voter turnout,” June 12 Review-Journal).



ZIP code health care

To the editor:

The Affordable Care Act needs to be revisited and redesigned to serve those currently enrolled and those who enroll in the future. We owe it to them by current law. Through my 50 years of experience in the health care system, I would first suggest a name change would be helpful. Perhaps the Affordable Access to Care Act would be more appropriate.

Patients with or without health insurance normally gravitate to local providers. Patients enter the system for examinations, evaluations and referrals to appropriate medical care providers. By using each hospital’s ZIP code, this is where “care” becomes “access.” The ZIP code theory for entering the health care system could be a new paradigm, instead of the exchange system which only serves small numbers of patients. We need the system to serve the entire population, especially if companies begin to drop employees’ coverage due to the ACA.

The theory is that the entire eligible patient population can access the system by ZIP code for primary care and routing to appropriate health care providers as a basic civil right. The confusion crated by the ACA since its enactment might have provided an unintended consequence of universal coverage for all of us — simply and locally.