Out of whack in Texas
So, here we are again in Texas … another massacre … this time with children at a grade school. Apparently, the 30 lives lost in 2019 between El Paso and Midland-Odessa weren’t enough to untangle the stronghold the NRA has on Texas politicians. In June 2021, just under a year ago, good ole Gov. Greg Abbott, flanked by representatives from the NRA, signed off on HB 1927. Prior to its passage, qualified residents were required to submit fingerprints, complete training, and pass both a written exam and proficiency test. The new law did away with all of this and now allows qualified residents to carry, openly or concealed, not only rifles but now handguns without a license or training. Gov. Abbott proudly proclaimed, “Texas will always be the leader in defending the Second Amendment which is why we built a barrier around gun rights.” Well, bravo to Gov. Abbott! So, while he and his cronies continue to talk about the shooter having mental health issues and ponder the delay of law enforcement at the elementary school, Texas politicians and others holding office have failed miserably to provide any explanation why this young man was legally able to purchase the assault weapons he did just days prior to the massacre.
Conspiracies and delusions
It is obvious from reading the rant from Bob Strong (“Ball of delusion,” May 27) that he has joined the cult that is willing to subscribe to any conspiracy theory that comes along.
While we all have witnessed true presidential incompetence recently, it is not the current sitting president. There are those who don’t understand economics who would like to blame the current president for everything from baby formula to inflation, neither of which the president – no matter who they are – controls.
If one wants to look for conspiracies, one might want to consider the religious right joining forces with the Republican Party and white nationalists to push back the rights of women and minorities in our society and return us to the 1950s when minorities had to sit in the back of the bus and women had to have a man sign a credit card application.
At the rate we are killing each other, let’s memorialize the innocent people who have died by gun violence. Why can’t our privileged 500 U.S. elected officials, responsible for the welfare of we 331 million, realize that sometime in this century, gun ownership cannot be an unrestricted right, but a privilege? Until then, we will bury our dead.
Larry E. Lanning
Blowing in the wind
How can each one of us not be heartbroken and sickened at another mass murder of innocents, especially when knowing that 10-year-olds were dialing 911 repeatedly while responders dithered? Some of the details of how the U.S. has become the world leader in mass murders are below:
Who: Young children, innocent bystanders.
What: Each life is terrorized and extinguished one by one because of someone’s unrelated hatred or insanity.
When: Anytime, often in broad daylight with preplanning.
Where: Schools, churches, places of business that should be considered as safe havens by all
Why: Because each of us has failed. 1, To protest loud and long the sale of military-style guns to almost anyone. 2, To reject NRA’s claim that there is a valid reason for any adult in the U.S. to own an assault rifle, thus enabling any person with mental illness or a vengeance to become not just a murderer, but a mass murderer – devastating hundreds of families, and 3, not telling our members of Congress they have a moral imperative to control these weapons and decrease the profit motive of this industry.
Landa L. Vierra
Long past time
The irony implicit in the philosophy of the Republican Party regarding the recent tragedy in Texas would be funny, if it weren’t so sad. As George Carlin so eloquently said, “These conservatives are really something, aren’t they? They’re all in favor of the unborn. They will do anything for the unborn, but once you’re born, you’re on your own. If you’re preborn, you’re fine. If you’re preschool, you’re (doomed).” In fact, they continue to make it ever easier for people who should never have access to a firearm to obtain high capacity, rapid-fire guns that can kill children with remarkable efficiency.
Their mantra is: The solution to a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. And yet in Texas a slew of good guys with guns, and badges, stood outside for over an hour while a bad guy with a gun killed 19 children and two teachers.
I’m sorry, but there are a lot of people who should never have a gun. That would include the Texas shooter, and the law enforcement officers who stood outside and did nothing. It is long past time to do something about that.
Daniel J. Schaffer
Part of the job
I was appalled to read that policemen hesitated to go into a school because they “feared for their lives.”
Getting shot is the daily lot of your police force. Every recruit should be told up front that they will be expected to risk their lives 24/7, and that dying in a hail of semi-automatic gunfire is a definite possibility. If they or their families can’t accept that, then the police force is not for them.
Is this ideal? No, of course not. Systemic changes are needed in your country.
But until that happens, all first responders should do as the name implies – and respond.
Ben da Silveira