Confiscating guns won’t make us safer

To the editor:

Every time a tragedy happens, the anti-gun media come out of the woodwork and call for a total gun ban. According to the Police Foundation, there are 165 million guns in the United States — 92 million of them are pistols. The politicians say that it would be impossible to deport all the illegal aliens even if we wanted to. Just how are they going to confiscate all 165 million guns even if we wanted to?

Well, the majority would be taken from all the law-abiding citizens who have to register them.

Once we take all the guns from the good citizens, only the criminals and gangs will have them, and we will be at their mercy. The police couldn’t protect us from an attack. We would be like fish in a barrel. Just waiting to be trapped like the Virginia Tech students. If the bad guy knows you don’t have any way to protect yourself and your home, there’s no deterrent to him kicking in your door and terrorizing your family.

I carry a legal pistol every day — not only to protect me and mine but to intervene to protect any other citizen I encounter who is in danger. It’s sad that I feel I have to carry one, but the world is a powder keg and more violent than ever.

Buy a gun, but learn how to use it and lock it up. The right to keep and bear arms should not be infringed.

William Coleman


Mental health

To the editor:

The Review-Journal’s response to the Virginia Tech tragedy in its Monday editorial, and the well-placed Wednesday commentary by Jacob Sullum, are both evidence that Review-Journal editors will not be happy until all our citizens can strap on guns so we can kill bad guys.

Arming teachers, as state Sen. Bob Beers and the Review-Journal favor, is not an effective way to control violence in our complex society. But it is cheap. If we arm teachers and the police respond to a school shooting, how will the police know the perpetrators from the vigilantes? If the good guys with guns in the school wore police uniforms, the cops would know, but hiring campus cops costs money, and we can’t have that.

The worst problem with this bunker mentality is the paranoid idea that we are all in this separately and your neighbor is a potential enemy. It is this same sense of isolation that drives suicidal people to make violent statements with their deaths. If we can’t stop suicide attacks in the Green Zone of Iraq, how can we expect to prevent violence in a place of learning by turning it into an armed camp, especially when the “enemy” is one of us?

The most effective way to prevent suicidal violence is with a focus on mental health in our whole society.

Jerry Bitts


Gun laws

To the editor:

In response to Andrea Eidenier’s Wednesday letter to the editor, “Lax gun laws to blame for Virginia Shooting”:

This letter was thought- provoking. She contends that if the gunman didn’t have such easy access to firearms, the tragedy at Virginia Tech would not have taken place. I know we will never convince her otherwise.

Ms. Eidenier states that she knows people would still have guns if they were banned — and she is absolutely correct. Honest, law-abiding citizens would then be at the mercy of the wolves of the world. Criminals, by very definition, do not obey laws.

Our fear of being unable to protect ourselves, our families and the innocent is why we believe in Section 11 of the Nevada Constitution — and why we will protect Ms. Eidenier from what makes her so sad.



Helping loners

To the editor:

There is only one thing worse than the events that happened at Virginia Tech, and that would be not to learn from this experience. Emergency procedures at our universities need to be addressed, and I’m sure many schools have already started doing so. After finding two students dead in a dorm room, the entire campus should have been placed on lockdown. Many lives could have been spared.

Some are pointing fingers at guns as the problem. I am not pro-gun, but I have never seen one fire itself. I guarantee that if guns were illegal, the shooter would have found a way to get his hands on one if he truly wanted it.

What we need to do is address the person, not the weapon he is holding. We need more people to reach out to the “loners” around us. Help them feel accepted, help them learn to socialize, help them build confidence in socializing. If they have somebody to whom they can reach out, such a tragedy might be avoided in the future.

We need a nationwide change in social climate. Exclusionary and elitist attitudes, coupled with ridicule, are what turn these shy and withdrawn people into monsters. How many more must die before we all recognize the need for a change?



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