Since the tragedy in Connecticut, the ignorance of people about guns and gun laws is astounding. Those who call for an "assault weapons" ban apparently neither know what an assault rifle is nor that they have been unable to be bought new by civilians since 1986. An assault rifle is a rifle that has what is known as select fire, meaning that it has a switch which can make it fire semi-automatic (one pull of the trigger, one bullet fired) or fully automatic (pressing the trigger causes a continual firing until the trigger is released).
What most people are calling for is a ban on sporting rifles. That is a semi-automatic rifle which can be used for hunting, competitions or self defense. All three of those are perfectly legal and have nothing to do with magazine size or rate of fire. In fact, a higher rate of fire leads to less accuracy, and larger magazines have a better chance of jamming. None of which is good for the three main uses of sporting rifles.
So the real question is: Why is the media trying to take away our tools which enable us to acquire food, have fun, and defend ourselves when necessary?
The Free Press editorial "Missy Crutchfield must go," (Dec. 12) is as good as the article by one of your reporters about his laxative debacle. Pure garbage!
I expect more of the paper. Very disappointing and also mean!
MOLLY CORN, Cleveland, Tenn.
Facts: guns are hunks of metal, inanimate; they do not "do" anything.
They can become harmful instruments in the wrong hands. The shooters/mass murderers were found to have been seriously mentally ill. That is more realistic than David Cook's column ("Guns kill, not autism," Dec. 19). It is not "vilifying" anyone.
I was stunned at the way Cook ranted on; I thought he was more reasonable than that. It is difficult to find words to address his tirade.
Lanza's mother had guns; she was very concerned about her son's problems. She took him and the guns to a shooting gallery! I think the mother had serious problems also.
I won't believe any "facts" the New York Times states; that group is known to be very anti-gun.
I agree with Governor Haslam's statement: "... addressing mental health issues is much more the preventative way to address this and something we can control." It is time to return proper diagnoses and treatment to mentally ill people to help them and society.
Learn and practice gun safety.
The Newtown massacre was horrible. It still convulses our nation. No one wants to hear of anything so tragic ever again. We all feel completely helpless. So let's mull two facts.
One, the assault gun used in Newtown did not walk to school. It was carried by a troubled person without the owner's consent. Two, with 300 million people in America, and an estimated 300 million guns in homes, what miracle of legislation will make a similar event possible? Laws are rules, but not everyone follows them. Tragic, but true.
A more useful solution could come from the time-tested military "know your enemy." The single thread that binds all shooters together is their choice of targets, which is undefended areas. As wildly illogical as it may first appear, if every law-abiding citizen carried a hand gun, shooters would be deprived of targets.
Could it be that legislation forcing all able-bodied and mentally competent folks to purchase and carry a gun, is the only workable way to "do something?" Logic has a tough time overcoming emotion and politics, but give it a try. It has a good history.
Reply to a Rant from Dec. 23.
I am glad to hear the GM bailout was only $12 billion. The banks got $300 billion to $400 billion and never paid a cent back.
Oh, but I forgot, that was G.W. Bush, and we never blame him for anything.
Take a look at http:// useconomy.about.com/od/criticalssues/a/govt_bailout .htm if you really want to see how much it cost U.S. taxpayers to bail out the banks!
NELSON R. SULLIVAN, Hixson
Do people want to know why we have wars, 9/11 and terrible situations like what happened in Connecticut? Read the comic strip "Pickles" on Dec. 26. Even people in affluent cultures choose to be ungodly and evil rather than good. They aren't made that way.
It is amazing, too, that you never hear stories about people who choose to follow the Lord Jesus Christ and choose to do righteously in this world, and have a hard time, but plenty of stories about those who choose to do evil, and they are glorified.
James 4:1-2 in the Bible tells us, "From whence cometh wars and fightings among you? Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not."
GLENN L. SWYGART, Sewanee, Tenn.
It would appear that the hypocrisy of President Obama and his administration has no bounds. It does not seem to bother them that they have been caught red-handed shuffling thousands of guns into Mexico via "Fast and Furious."
On the other hand, in response to the actions of a single deranged man (Adam Lanza) who took his mother's legally owned firearms and perpetrated one of the most heinous acts of random murder and mayhem in our history, the president suddenly is moved to take action against the "gun culture" in the U.S.A.
On Dec. 14, Adam Lanza used firearms to perpetrate a massacre, but on that same date, approximately 100 million law-abiding citizens did not! Somehow it makes sense to the liberal mind that the rights of the 100 million should be restricted because of Adam Lanza's actions. The president and Eric Holder are up to their necks in "Fast and Furious" and yet the NRA and law-abiding citizens who own guns are the villains. Go figure!
BOB DYSART, Ooltewah
Is it possible that there are more regulations on the type of golf club I can purchase than there are on the type of gun I can purchase?
Recently the governing bodies of golf (USGA and R&A) decided to ban the "belly putter." Due to this ban the production of this type of putter will stop. Once production stops I will find it much harder to find this type of putter for purchase. This type of putter helps me make more putts on the golf course, and making putts makes me happy. So you could say banning it infringes on my God-given right to my pursuit of happiness.
The USGA has gone too far!
That last part was kinda stupid, wasn't it?
Why does it not sound stupid when you replace golf club with gun? Why can we not have regulations on the type of guns we allow?
I don't know how many people have been killed using a belly putter, but I'm pretty sure that number is lower than the number of people who have been killed using a gun.