Why was courthouse shooter free?

To the editor:

Johnny Lee Wicks, who killed a Las Vegas federal building security guard and wounded a U.S. marshal, had a lengthy criminal history, including the murder of his brother and sex assault-domestic violence (“Anger clung to shooter,” Wednesday Review-Journal).

The man who killed four police officers recently in the state of Washington also had a serious and lengthy criminal history, as did Phillip Garrido, who kidnapped 11-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard in 1991.

If such criminals are a serious danger to society, why are they let out to commit crimes against unsuspecting innocent people? Laws and practices need to be changed to keep such serious offenders behind bars for a very long time.

Kenneth L. Zimmerman

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIF.

Gun sales

To the editor:

Johnny Lee Wicks, the 66-year-old man who opened fire with a Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun at the federal courthouse on Monday, had been convicted of a violent felony several years ago. I haven’t seen any reports indicating where or how, having been convicted of a violent crime, he was able to obtain a firearm.

The individual who provided him with the shotgun should be held accountable as an accomplice and charged with first-degree murder.

Frank Maas

LAS VEGAS

Driving texter

To the editor:

Why are the government and special-interest groups trying ban texting while driving? On Wednesday, the Review-Journal printed an article headlined “Traffic deaths fall for fourth year in a row.”

I work in outside sales. The ability to text and drive is a valuable tool to my success while working on the road.

TANN SUMMERS

LAS VEGAS

Pay up

To the editor:

I’m sick of hearing “Nevada has some of the highest paid public employees.” Don’t you think the low number of public employees in Nevada would bring up the “average” wage? Especially since we only have essential workers here.

We’re not wasting money like other states that have $8 an hour toll booth workers. Or $6 an hour meter maids.

Remember, the principle on which this nation was founded was for us to run the government, not the government to run us. Since Nevada has, for the most part, been responsible in what positions are made available, state employees shouldn’t have to take a pay cut to “fit the norm.”

And I’m sick of hearing about cops and firefighters being overpaid. Give them a pay cut and see what happens. The pay our law enforcement workers receive is the reason we don’t have as much corruption as the rest of the urban areas in the country. Look at the small towns where cops make $12 an hour and tell me there isn’t a little bit of favoritism.

Gov. Jim Gibbons needs to get real. And the Legislature needs to wake up before it’s too late.

You get what you pay for.

Joel Tyning

LAS VEGAS

New leaf

To the editor:

Before it’s too late, here are some suggested New Year’s resolutions for politicians.

— Stop adding pork to bills.

— Stop lying to the public about the cost of bills.

— Stop bribing other senators and representatives to vote for your bills.

— Stop all bailouts.

— Join the fight to implement term limits on senators and representatives.

— Take a course in understanding the Constitution and the meaning of individual rights.

— Listen to your constituents.

— Make certain that “czars” are approved by the Congress and that they, too, swear to uphold the Constitution.

— Protect citizens by allowing the armed forces, police and the courts to do their jobs.

— Work to make sure our enemies are given a unified and clear message from Congress about what will happen to them if they initiate force against us.

— Take another course in understanding the Constitution.

Sonya Healy

LAS VEGAS

Health care

To the editor:

Re: Gerry Hageman’s Jan. 1 letter, “Reid’s bill gives the sick cost certainty”:

To address just one of the points in Mr. Hageman’s letter, I ask this question: Why is it necessary for adults who are 26 years old to have Mommy and Daddy help take care of them? Let’s see, when you’re 18 you can: get married (younger in some states), die for your country and vote. When you are barely a teenager, you can get an abortion without even notifying your folks. But carry your own health insurance? Oh my gosh, no! There are fancy cars and fancy stuff to buy.

Has it occurred to you that people under 30 are most likely to be uninsured because that’s their choice? And since when does the government stick its nose into parents’ role in their kids’ health care coverage? Where is that in the Constitution? So suppose that parents throw the kid out of the nest and tell him to grow up. Then the kid needs medical attention and doesn’t have insurance. He can sue his parents now?

Mr. Hageman argues that people under 30 require health care more than anyone. Huh? I’d argue that young people are far healthier than older people, just stupider — and no health care plan can fix that. Furthermore, hospitals and clinics are in financial distress not because the young people aren’t paying their bills but because the government isn’t. President Obama recently “requested” (read: arm-twisted) medical facilities to waive their massive, outstanding government bills to “help fund” Obamacare. Sure, that solves everything.

How is Obamacare and Harry Reid’s role in it wrong? Let me count the ways.

LINDA DELAMARE

PAHRUMP

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