I remember the response in Boston after the April 15, 2013, bombing at the Boston Marathon. Understandably many were fearful, but in only a few days the theme of “Boston strong” emerged.
The people embraced this. Wouldn’t it be refreshing if more of our elected officials in response to refugees entering our state were to show that fear is not merited or desired?
But no. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, U.S. Sens. Jerry Moran and Pat Roberts and Rep. Kevin Yoder all indicated that Kansans should be afraid and not strong.
Also remember that a few years ago, two homegrown Kansans prepared explosives in Kansas, and then drove to Oklahoma, blowing up a building and killing many on April 19, 1995. Why didn’t we know what they were up to?
Remember the phrase: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” For our elected officials to join the bandwagon for political reasons to promote fear is unfortunate. And finally, we were founded as a democracy, not a theocracy.
Dear Rep. Yoder
I, like many other American citizens, am deeply concerned about the repeated mass shootings across the nation, and the easy access to guns of all kinds. Our government is doing nothing to stop these shootings.
New or amended laws that seek to minimize the incidence of these shootings and gun violence of all other kinds are long overdue. We as a nation need to have a bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives toward this end — immediately. I respectfully ask you to introduce such a bill.
I’m well aware of the complicated and contentious reality involving Second Amendment rights, the proliferation of guns and these repeated mass shootings. I do not own, and never have owned a gun, but I fundamentally respect and value the Bill of Rights. Our government can and should take reasonable and immediate action.
These measures should include:
▪ Mandatory background checks on all gun buyers, regardless of where they seek to buy guns and prohibition of gun purchases or possession by any other means for those who are documented to have severe mental illnesses or who are felons.
▪ A complete ban on assault weapons.
▪ Mandatory prison sentences for violators, including those who unlawfully sell, buy, or otherwise provide or possess guns, whether first-time or repeat offenders.
▪ A requirement that lawful gun owners renew their licenses yearly, with comprehensive background checks every time they seek to renew.
▪ Increased liability for gun manufacturers and distributors.
Jerome F. LaMartina
The American public is regularly dumbstruck by the ugly remarks emanating from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. We just can’t fathom how someone who apparently hopes/plans to become the president could come up with such abysmally foolish, false and cruel remarks.
His latest pronouncement, about banning all Muslims from entering the United States, is another escalation of his inflammatory rhetoric. He keeps inserting his foot in his idiotic mouth and some of his followers, apparently equally idiotic, are still swallowing his poison.
Fortunately all halfway intelligent persons, including most Republicans, are horrified and have made their rejection of his comments very clear. Trump uses his money and his notoriety as a club, doing his best to bully anyone who challenges him.
America, we’ve had enough of this clown. No, he’s not funny; he’s dangerous.
Why are we letting the world think we might be represented by such a thug? Someone has to let him know: Trump — You’re fired!
Dangers of guns
Efforts at gun control legislation have been ineffective. They’ve been ineffective because gun and ammunition companies bankroll the National Rifle Association, which in turn provides millions in campaign contributions to defeat anyone who advocates gun control.
The gun manufacturers get their NRA money from the sale of guns. People who live in suburbia buy millions of these guns even though most gun homicides occur in inner-city areas.
Suburbanites are in little danger from guns unless there is a gun in the home, which greatly increases chance that someone in that home will be shot. Then why do these people buy guns?
Because they are afraid and think they need protection. They need re-education. Every day the newspaper and TV news report gun homicides and mass shootings.
Yet most gun deaths in suburbia are from suicide. Each year there are 19,000 handgun suicides in America compared with 11,000 firearm homicides. Newspapers and TV do not report on most suicides, so people are not aware of the real danger of owning a handgun.
The greater gun danger is from suicide, not to mention the increased likelihood of accidental shootings and domestic homicides because of easy gun access. Gun control advocates would do better to educate the public about the prevalence of suicides and other gun deaths in the home rather than lobby directly for gun legislation.
For instance, the news media could report weekly on the number of gun suicides and domestic shootings in Johnson County. Gun control groups could educate the public by sponsoring television spots about the dangers of handgun ownership.
An informed public would buy fewer guns that help bankroll the gun lobby and frustrate efforts to bring about reasonable gun legislation.
R. Vance Hall
To send letters
Visit the Letters website at kansascity.com/letters to submit your letter to the editor for 913. The website form, with helpful reminders on required information replaces an email address for online submissions. You may also mail letters of up to 300 words to 913 Letters, The Kansas City Star, 1729 Grand Blvd. Kansas City, MO, 64108. Online letters are preferred.