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Lax gun laws to blame for Virginia shooting

To the editor:

I am a full-time community college student. The Virginia Tech shooting doesn’t scare me — it just makes me sad. If the gunman hadn’t had such ample access to either guns or ammunition, the death toll probably would have been lower or possibly nonexistent.

Every time a school shooting happens, the media, the victims’ families and the general public look for reasons and people to blame. We should all start by blaming ourselves.

There’s no reason for a person to carry a gun unless he is a government official, a hunter in a rural area or a criminal. There is no reason a person should be able to buy as much ammunition as he wants, especially for weapons such as pistols. These lax laws are keeping this country in danger of its own citizens.

I know that people would still have guns if they were banned. But if they were harder to get, people who are in desperate situations would seek other methods to remedy their situations.

In this country, we are so afraid of not being able to protect ourselves that we make it easier to put guns in the hands of people who will harm us. It makes me sad.

Andrea Eidenier


Cheap ride

To the editor:

I read that ridership on the Las Vegas Monorail is dropping. In my opinion, here is one of the reasons why:

My husband and I decided to go down to the Strip and visit several hotels for various reasons. We thought we’d park and ride the monorail around rather than move the car several times. Then it hit us. Every time we ride the monorail it would cost us $5 each. If we visited the three hotels, it would cost us $40 to ride the monorail. Obviously, we decided to take the car to the various places.

I’m sure we’re not the only ones who think this is ridiculous. I have visited many cities around the world that have rapid transit systems (London and Paris come to mind) and, believe me, I would never have taken rapid transit if it cost me $5 every time I boarded.

Also, most cities allow riders to use day or weekly passes on either the subway or the bus system. If our monorail charged $1 or $2, the ridership would probably double. I’m sure our tourists would be more inclined to hop on if it were cheaper.

It’s very inconvenient as it is, so charging more in order to increase revenues doesn’t make sense. People might be willing to put up with the inconvenience if it were less expensive.



Stem cells

To the editor:

Regarding Betty Maxey’s Tuesday letter about President Bush’s threat to veto the embryonic stem-cell research bill:

The president has always been very clear: It is his position that the federal government should not be “in the business of funding the destruction of human life.” Of course, there are those who would argue that a fertilized egg is not a human life.

But if the research is as “promising” as Ms. Maxey contends, why aren’t the private research scientists clamoring to pursue this research? To date, there has been absolutely nothing to substantiate that embryonic stem-cell research is any better than other types of researching stem cells, such as stem cells from adults or umbilical cords, etc.

Many people misinterpret the president’s position and the current laws, assuming the federal government has prohibited the actual research of embryonic stem cells. That is not true. There simply has not been any federal funding of such research beyond the limited number of “lines” under way when President Bush took office in 2001. If a scientist wants to continue his or her research of “discarded embryos,” there’d be no violation of law to do that.

Linda Dahlquist



To the editor

Your Monday article regarding bedbugs was very informative. I must, however, correct the statement from Gregg Wears of the Southern Nevada Health District regarding the alleged harmful nature of DDT.

Contrary to popular perception, DDT was not banned because it is “bad for our health and the environment.” It was banned because of the popular outcry resulting from the publication of the book “Silent Spring.” Although there is no proof that DDT harms anything on this good green Earth of ours, it remains banned because of the incorrect popular perception regarding its supposed dangers.

As a result, millions have died unnecessarily in the Third World from malaria. Meanwhile, here at home, we face a bedbug problem that could be resolved with a few puffs of DDT.

Mr. Wears should live up to his position as a public guardian and peruse the literature on this subject. Time permitting, he can start with an article titled “DDT: A Case Study in Scientific Fraud” by J. Gordon Edwards and Jane M. Orientin the fall 2004 edition of the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons.

Or perhaps he can start with some of the many columns published by, among others, Vin Suprynowicz and Walter Williams.



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