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LETTERS: Finicum’s death in Oregon standoff completely preventable

The death of Robert “LaVoy” Finicum at a police roadblock in Oregon was indeed a tragic event (“FBI releases footage of fatal shooting of LaVoy Finicum,” Jan. 29 Review-Journal). He was a husband, father and grandfather. I am sorry for his family’s loss. It should be remembered that the officers manning the roadblock also have families.

The real tragedy is that this occupation never should have reached this stage. The local sheriff offered to safely escort members of the group to the Oregon border, if they would leave the refuge. For whatever misguided reason, most of the militia members refused the offer.

At the time of the shooting, occupants of the vehicles that stopped at the barricade and complied with officers’ orders were taken into custody without harm. Mr. Finicum’s actions in attempting to elude arrest placed himself in grave danger, with tragic results.

What will it take to convince people that if you take an action that forces a police officer to make a split-second decision, fearing for himself or public safety, you will probably be shot? This seems to happen every week throughout the nation.

Back in the Old West, gunfighters had a saying: “If you choose to live by the gun, you sometimes die by the gun.”

Larry Hanneman

Las Vegas

State superintendent job

Regarding the search for a new state superintendent of public instruction, why would Gov. Brian Sandoval, the state’s leading elected official and a proponent of excellence in education, approve a search for the position by advertising only on Craiglist in Reno? And why would the qualifications include anyone over the age of 21 who possesses the “knowledge and ability” to carry out state laws and regulations? (“Education board sends 3 superintendent candidates to Sandoval,” Jan. 29 Review-Journal).

I am a founder and former administrator of innovative charter schools and most likely would not qualify for this position in other states. It is absurd that this state, among the lowest-rated in the nation for public education, would have such minimal qualifications for such an important job. Usually, a nationwide search would be conducted to hire a person vested in education and management.

The RJ article stated that the Nevada Board of Education forwarded three qualified candidates to the governor for his consideration. It was obvious only one of them was truly qualified — interim state superintendent Steve Canavero, who ended up getting the job.

Government jobs are competitive. We no longer have favorite son appointees. The hiring process for this position does not pass the smell test.

Judi Johnson

Las Vegas

Fixing immigration

How can the United States end massive, nation-wrecking illegal immigration once and for all? How can the federal government secure our borders and protect our national security? How can we defend and preserve U.S. citizenship, sovereignty and the rule of law?

First, force Congress to pass a mandatory E-verify law that gives America a legal workforce. Second, force Congress to pass a biometric entry/exit law that monitors and controls visa overstayers. Third, force Congress to ban sanctuary cities. Fourth, force Congress to end the corrupt earned income tax child credit provision, which has resulted in a windfall for illegal aliens filing federal income tax returns using a taxpayer identification number instead of a Social Security number. Fifth, elect a president who will complete the double-security fence mandated by the Secure Fence Act passed by Congress in 2006

Finally, elect a president who will expeditiously remove unlawful aliens.

The absolute wrong thing to do is elect a president who promotes granting amnesty, legal status and citizenship to millions of foreigners who are violating our labor, tax, identity theft and immigration laws.

Lawrence J. Brown

North Las Vegas

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LETTER: Be thankful you can actually buy gasoline

As someone old enough to have endured 1974 gas shortages and lines at pumps, with sometimes 50 vehicles waiting to buy gas, I am OK with paying $5 a gallon for gasoline.