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home : opinions : opinions August 27, 2015


5/19/2013 9:55:00 PM
Letter: Background checks not the answer

EDITOR:

In response to the letter submitted by Monica White, which was printed on May 7, and to the recent Courier editorial concerning the need to enact further background checks to express sympathy for the families of the Sandyhook shooting, I want to assure you that the gun community and NRA members do not lack a feeling of compassion towards those families.

The incident was indeed a tragedy and steps should be taken to reduce the possibility of another similar event. However, the proposed legislative background checks, restrictive magazine capacities, and banning of certain types of firearms are not the answer. These types of proposed legislation would not have any impact at all on all of the school or movie house shootings. The answer lies with swift and certain prosecution of violent criminals, securing our schools and fixing our broken mental health care system.

Violent crime has fallen for the past years no doubt because of expansion of concealed carry laws. Citizens of Vermont and Arizona now enjoy the legal ability to carry even without a permit. Violent crime has continued to decrease. An armed society is a polite society and I would encourage properly trained individuals to carry a weapon concealed at all times. Of course, common sense restrictions apply such as being properly trained, not carrying if consuming alcohol, and not carrying in restricted areas.

I made my living carrying a firearm for 32 years and speak from experience and from the belief that American citizens have a right to protect themselves from violent crime. If this belief rankles the psyche of our liberal friends, then so be it.

By the way, AR-15's are not assault weapons, they just look like and are erroneously construed to be such as a result of their appearance. Assault weapons are fully automatic, AR-15's are semiautomatic, being the action type present in America for over 100 years.

Garry Shumann

Chino Valley




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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, May 27, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Paula Gize Right on Mr. Hogan
Thank you, Paula. As you know knee-jerk reactions in response to a tragedy will never result in a positive out come. As the saying goes"The road to Hell is paved by good intentions". We can't allow the actions of criminals or the insane to determine what freedoms we as law abiding people shall retain, as they are the ones who are never affected by it, thus we all become slaves to their actions and behavior. Since you and I are on the same page and if you haven't already read it I would suggest "The Law" by Frederic Bastiat a French economist and statesman. One chapter called "The Complete Perversion of Law" is an excellent read where Mr.Bastiat states that the law "has converted plunder as a right, in order to protect plunder. And it has converted lawful defense into a crime, in order to punish lawful defense". I think you will find it interesting.


Posted: Sunday, May 26, 2013
Article comment by: Paula Gize Right on Mr. Hogan

When I see and read the bleating silliness of the left, who seem unable to make a connective link between what they support, and the bad news that comes immediately thereafter, it makes me physically ill.

Sgt. Stryker said, "...Life it tough, it's tougher when you're stupid!..."

This should be the liberals' organizing motto as they fit the mold to a "T".


Posted: Sunday, May 26, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Attentive Listener
Thank You. I do understand your point of view as to the amendment process of the Constitution and agree If somethings not perfect there should be some process to amend it and fortunately it is a difficult process to amend the Constitution. But what I don't want to see are rogue politicians or governments eliminating basic human rights that are already guaranteed by the Constitution, under the guise of public safety or some other trumped up reason, in spite of the fact that they are sworn to uphold the Constitution and try to do an end run around the amendment process. Once these protections are gone we will never get them back. I think it was Ben Franklin who said "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. It's been a good discussion and in spite of our political differences I respect your point of view.



Posted: Sunday, May 26, 2013
Article comment by: Attentive Listener

@Stephen Hogan- Yes, I get your point, but I don't think you get mine. Anyway, thanks for the sincere response.

Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2013
Article comment by: Frank Lee Confused

Gary, check the BREAKING NEWS.

Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Attentive Listener
I guess although we both dis-agree with each other, we are free to believe in what we wish to believe as it should be, or shouldn't it ? I believe that the Constitution is there to constrain government otherwise we will have corrupt power hungry politicians enslaving the people, history provides enough evidence of this. If the Constitution can be changed at the whim of any corrupt administration or political agenda, then we will have no "Bill of Rights" whatsoever and it matters not whether it's a Republican administration or a Democratic administration. We could lose our 2nd Amendment rights or the right to free speech or freedom of religion or the right to peaceably assemble etc. This has nothing to do with the "Bible" or whether you believe in God or not. Who will be allowed to pick and choose what rights we shall be entitled to exercise? Republicans? Democrats? Communists? Atheists? Christians? I guess it would all depend on who's in charge at the time. Can you imagine what a nightmare that would be? Especially since we have elections every year and administrations change from one party to the other every 4 or 8 years. Although it might be flawed to some, I still believe in the Constitution as being the law of the land and that all politicians and judges should uphold it as they have taken oaths to do, otherwise they should be removed from office. I couldn't imagine living in a country where we have no civil rights other than what is permitted by some corrupt politicians or political party. We have to be very careful what we wish for what may be important to you may not be to me or visa versa.


Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Paula Gize @ Stephen Hogan: My typo...my bad.
My only intention was to correct an honest mistake, as you and I are in total agreement that the founders of this nation gave us "God given" rights that can not be taken away by some rogue government, such as we have today. Hence they used the term "And are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights" which are incorporated in the U.S. Constitution as the "Bill of Rights". Some people don't believe in that, but it is what it is. Both you and I know that and believe in it, but it's hard to convince some people otherwise and their only response is name calling and ridicule. So be it. Anyway we are in this fight together and I appreciate your well thought out comments.


Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2013
Article comment by: Attentive Listener

What does it mean to "believe in the Constitution"? It sounds like you are talking about the Bible. The Constitution was deeply flawed when written, and its authors knew it. It was the best that could be passed at the time. That is why they left a process for amending it, and amended it vigorously themselves at the first opportunity.

They were literal revolutionaries who believed that change was constant and healthy for society, who probably would not approve of blind adherence or followership, even to ideas they themselves promulgated. That's why your use of the word "believe" above seems so incongruous.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Meaning vs. Intent @Hogan's not My hero

"So, Mr. Hogan, that phrase in NOT therefore in the U.S. Constitution.
Just because it was "written by the same people", does not make it the same document, nor convey the same intent".

You both said pretty much the same thing.

On both counts I never said it was, I only stated the obvious, please re-read my comment. The authors of the "Declaration of Independence" believed that all men are created equal and are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. And those rights are incorporated in the first ten amendments to the Constitution which is known as "The Bill of Rights". So the two documents in fact are related even though they are not the same document or have the same intent. Why is that so hard to understand? I firmly believe in the U.S. Constitution and no amount of name calling or insults will change that.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Paula Gize @ Stephen Hogan: My typo...my bad.

You caught me fair and square in an error. I had originally put in two quotes, one from the Declaration and one from the Constitution, in editing I deleted the wrong line.

Mea Culpa.

Regardless, in neither document, did any of the writers / signers / or founders ever refer to evolution, which was my point overall.

At least you leftoids are reading real documents instead of the Daily KOS blogs, Obama Talking-Points, and the Kommunist Manifesto for a change.

My advice keep perusing...let me know where the part is about illegal immigrants getting free 'anything', homosexuality being normal, gun grabbing, hate crime laws, or the right of irresponsible 'mothers' to kill the unborn.

That stuff is usually in the back under "Fantasy of the Left" ya' can't miss it, as it stinks and is strewn everywhere.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Hogan's not My hero

No kidding? Duh! You seem to have missed the obvious. Prescott's favorite know-it-all was telling others they were wrong while she was wrong about a simple fact of American history. Last I looked the two documents were neither the same nor interchangeable, no matter who wrote them.

Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Meaning vs. Intent

So, Mr. Hogan, that phrase in NOT therefore in the U.S. Constitution.

Just because it was "written by the same people", does not make it the same document, nor convey the same intent.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Stephen Hogan

@Hey, Hey Paula
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness"

It's in the second paragraph in the "Declaration of Independence". I believe those who wrote that were the same individuals who wrote "The Constitution" which gave us our "Bill of Rights".


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Hey, Hey, Paula

Re: Wrong, Wronger, Wrongest

Please be kind enough to tell us exactly where in the US Constitution the phrase "endowed by their creator" appears. Is that statement wrong, wronger or wrongest?

Great new nom de plume, by the way. It describes your rantings perfectly.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Hokas Pokas

@ Ba Loney:

I completely agree.

There are enough laws, they just need to be enforced, which they definitely are not.


Posted: Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Article comment by: Ba Loney

Hokas:
Getting back to the point of Background Checks, as was the primary point of this Letter to the Editor, where do you stand?
Personally, I think that we have a sufficient amount of laws in place if they are, indeed, enforced.


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Blue Dog knows Foxy lies

@ M Soldier

Personally, I would never acknowledge my defense systems. I was actually asked by an alarm company cold call solicitation whether I had home protection. Duh!

The point is, you are not the people who we are worried about. However, buying into a confiscation and disarming citizens conspiracy is pretty irrational both to intent and purpose, and being even remotely possible.

Conspiracies can only be maintained by some control, like the blood oath of the Mafia or threat of prison for military secretes. There would be know way that a person involved in politics or government, would not spill the beans for the profit of writing a book.

A conspiracy of one may never be found out, while a conspiracy of two have a 50% chance, and the odds go up from there. Were talking government here, salaried people and professional careerist who would get fired, if caught in election politics on the job. Conspiracies are an attempt at simple reasons to explain complex issues.


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Hokas Pokas

@ Ba Loney:

I agree with you, but you miss my point. I am not suggesting an SKS as an effective home defense weapon. What I am suggesting is that it meets the requirements of the "Assault Weapons Ban" regulations (as does an M1 Garand) and yet, in the wrong hands, could be very destructive (as would an M1 Garand). But it is a lot cheaper.


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Hooty Hoo

I have a pal in Texas who claims he has one of those semiautomatic clip rifles mounted on a swivel post in the truck bed. He says he can legally hunt stuff with it when the truck is moving. Can that be possibly true or is he yanking my chain?

Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: @ Steven Ayres Liberals: Wrong Wronger Wrongest..no trust.

See, Steve, the problem you have is clear in your recent post wherein you once again try to re-hash that left-wing red herring of America's Founding Fathers not being christianic or religious. Total nonsense.

The US Constitution refers to man being "...endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights...", not as '...persons given some controlled privileges as determined by the Antediluvian sea worm from which they evolved...'. Clearly, the founders were God fearing persons, biblically centric, and great intellectuals, but in the end just men.

The reason neither the Left (you) nor Right (what you think I am) is trusted, by us Libertarians, or one another, is because neither side gets it. Frankly, it seems the Liberals wants the country torn down overnight, while the Conservatives would like to implement a 5 year plan of total destruction.

Just think how terrible life would be if Liberals got all they wanted.

Pick a Liberal Wants category:

Abortion Myth: Women should have right to choose.

Abortion Fact: Millions of murdered souls killed in the womb, and their parts & pieces sold to 'science' for research and other uses. Meanwhile, the mother of the aborted fetus suffers mental and physical problems. Immigrant Mothers-2-Be sneaking into America so their kids get citizenship and a welfare check, being paid for by US women who killed their own children, and now are working to pay taxes. Neverrmind the foreign adoption business.

Gun Control Myth: We just want the government to register guns so we all know who has what, and stop another Sandy Hook.

Gun Control Fact: Confiscation for all guns at the first opportunity.

IRS interference into this or that political party is pure liberalism. Blaming Bush for middle east wars when he has been out of office for over five years is more left wing trash talk. Calling Trayvon Martin anything other than a violent thug is pure left wing hypocrisy in supporting a lifestyle they adore.

My favorite is the Major Hasan fiasco. You may recall he killed and wounded all those soldiers down at Fort Hood. Many of the soldiers, those not shot dead, were severely wounded and drummed out of the Army. They are still arguing with the VA over benefits. Meanwhile, the good Muslim Major, is still drawing full pay and allowances, almost $300K so far, courtesy of Eric Holder and your president, who can't seem to figure out how to have a trial. Seems odd. (Oh, yeah...Hasan gets totally free medical care, as well...No VA two-step for him.)

BTW...the white, single mother of 3, police officer who helped bring down Hasan (after he shot her) was fired by the same government who is paying Hasan, due to budget cuts, and is still unemployed. I guess your president forgot to call her like he did the Gay sports star.

These are but a few of the reasons Liberals cannot be trusted. You lie to get your way, and refuse to acknowledge the harm you do.



Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: The Ayres of Prescott are Upon You

From the first days that achedemists began spewing philosophy from the comfort of their armchairs, more of humanity has suffered death from their teachings and strokes of their pens than any other weapon ever conceived.
Question authority, or, especially, lack thereof.


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: That is Gunnery Sergeant to you!

@ M Soldier

I'll take your bet there cupcake!


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Arch Wood

Perhaps as Mr. Shumann argues, some of the reduction in violent crime is due to more guns, but attributing all of the reduction to more guns is simplistic. Violent crime has been falling for a long time. Why this is so is very uncertain. Among other possible reasons: many more criminals are in prison policing has improved use of crack cocaine in those born since about 1970 is much lower than in those born earlier, etc.

Mr. Shumann asserts that and armed society is a polite society. It might be argued as well that an armed society is an intimidated one. But courtesy need not stem from intimidation. It could just as well arise from proper socialization and instinctive consideration for fellow human beings—just it does now in most of America and in many other nations that are not armed to the teeth.


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Arch Wood

Mr. Shumann is surely right to say that NRA members and other gun owners sympathize with the families who lost children in the Sandy Hook shooting. And violent criminals should be prosecuted, and we should do a better job caring for people with mental health problems.

But Mr. Shumann is too pessimistic about the effectiveness of background checks to stop some mass shooters.

According to Senator Toomey's web site, Title One of Manchin-Toomey bill would have strengthened the databases used by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), especially by better covering those with mental health problems. The bill would have removed privacy restrictions limiting inclusion of those with such problems in the NICS database, and it would have provided incentives to states to provide such data to the database.

Title Two of the bill would have expanded background checks to cover more comprehensively firearms transfers.

Neither of these provisions would run afoul of the ruling of the Supreme Court in the Heller case, which found in the Constitution an individual right to bear arms.

Recognizing some of the concerns of firearms owners, the bill would have exempted certain private transfers from background checks, in particular, “Family transfers and some private sales (friends, neighbors, other individuals) are/ [would have been] exempt from background check.”


The bill would also have reinforced the existing prohibition against establishing a registry of gun ownership.


But if the bill’s measures had been in effect, they would, arguably, have prevented the shootings at Virginia Tech, at Tucson and at Aurora, as all three of the shooters were mentally impaired.


So why would expanding background checks the way Senators Manchin and Toomey have proposed not be a good idea?


Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Article comment by: Hooty Hoo

Here's what the libs keep saying about gun control around here:
1. If the background check is mandated the next thing that happens is Hitler will come break down our doors and take our guns.
2. There are more deaths in Phoenix swimming pools each year than die from guns in the whole country.
3. If guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns.
4. It says in the constitution that we can own assault weapone. It's called a "militia right".
Seriously, these guys actually beieve this.



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