We need stricter gun laws

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I watched a very emotional and heart-wrenching ceremony on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives recently, in which Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., submitted her letter of resignation to the speaker of the House. One year ago, Rep. Giffords was shot in the brain by a mentally deranged madman who should not have had access to a gun. During that attack, six people were killed, including a precious 9-year-old girl, and several others were wounded.

As I reflect on the nearly eight decades of my life, I remember how President John F. Kennedy, Sen. Robert Kennedy and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. were brutally murdered by gunmen. Countless others have been killed or seriously wounded by mentally deranged people who had access to guns.

Our nation has been robbed of some of our greatest treasures in the prime of their lives but, sadly, these attacks will continue unless we place strong restrictions on the sale, purchase and possession of guns. The most heart-wrenching gun attacks involve children who had access to guns that were not stored securely by their adult owners.

I realize that supporters of the National Rifle Association will demonize me for proposing strong gun control, but as a nation of civilized people we cannot afford the continued proliferation of guns in our society. For many people guns have become their object of worship and, tragically, this carnage will continue unless we enact stricter gun ownership laws and impose stronger penalties for violating those laws.

I thank God for bringing Rep. Giffords through this terrible tragedy, and I pray for her full recovery and return to Congress.

The Rev. Paul L. Cook

Augusta

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specsta
7865
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specsta 02/04/12 - 12:34 am
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Amen, Reverend...

Amen, Reverend...

Insider Information
4009
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Insider Information 02/04/12 - 12:49 am
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A person depraved enough to

A person depraved enough to kill will find a way to kill whether it's with a gun, steak knife, scissors, the family car, or his own hands.

I've never understood the argument that someone willing to break the law to commit murder would be unwilling to break the law to obtain a gun.

We can change the law, but that won't change people's hearts.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:04 am
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I am sorry, The Rev, (are you

I am sorry, The Rev, (are you an Episcopalian?), I can not disagree with you more. Criminals will always have guns and use them. Your letter does not address where the guns used in those crimes came from. I have owned a gun since 1997 and I promise you it has never been used in a crime or used to murder anyone. My husband has owned a shot gun and a French Resistance sniper rifle. Neither of them have been used to shoot anyone, but I guarantee that under SC law, anyone invading my premises are at grave risk and will be dealt with without asking questions, according to our state law.

KSL
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:06 am
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The first time I ever shot my

The first time I ever shot my pistol was in a gun class put on for women by the City of Aiken. The very capable instructor told me to remind him never to try to break into my house. The police want law abiding people armed. It helps them.

KSL
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:07 am
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Oh, I'm not a member of the

Oh, I'm not a member of the NRA. I am a smart American citizen.

Cdr4500
21
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 01:17 am
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"A person depraved enough to
Unpublished

"A person depraved enough to kill will find a way to kill whether it's with a gun, steak knife, scissors, the family car, or his own hands."

America has more handgun deaths per capita than any other country on the earth. And more than half of these are either suicides, family disputes. or accidents. People get drunk, they get angry, they get depressed, and someone reaches for a gun and its all over. And every year, tragically, young children decide to "play with Daddy's gun" with predicable results. Gun proponents would argue that "Guns don't kill people, people kill people" and of course, that is true.

A gun produces a very sudden and violent death. You attack your spouse with a knife, at least there is a chance she can duck or run away - leave the house, find a neighbor, call the police. But a bullet travels at many times the speed of sound. You can't duck a bullet (like they do on television). It is a decision that can be made instantaneously and have very bad permanent results.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:19 am
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A little research. You are

A little research. You are Presbyterian. Right? One of the 3 religions my husband was reared in. He got to choose between the Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church and the Episcopal Church. I am married to him because he chose the Episcopal Church and rejected the other two and that is how we met. And he owns guns.

Cdr4500
21
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 01:23 am
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I think that if your child
Unpublished

I think that if your child gets ahold of your gun you should immediately lose the privilege of owning a gun since you've proven you can't responsibly keep the weapon from your kids plus charges of child endangerment if possible.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:27 am
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If a person is contemplating

If a person is contemplating suicide they will find a way to do it. If the gun is the easiest thing available, then I guess they will use it. But if they don't have a gun and they want to end their life, they will find a way. Please throw out that lame argument. Also, please provide us with the number of households who own fire arms and don't have those deaths you describe. Throwing out information like you just did is bogus without stats to back up your comment. I come from generations and generations of gun owners without one murder or suicide. All the way back to the Mayflower. Totally worthless information provided by you. Do you have a problem in your family with the ability of people to be responsible gun owners? If you do, self police. Leave the rest of us alone.

Cdr4500
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 01:31 am
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Cdr4500
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 01:36 am
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I'm really tired of seeing
Unpublished

I'm really tired of seeing people cite the second amendment as if it's some sort of commandment along the lines of, 'Thou shalt own a Smith and Wesson.'

The second amendment of the constitution is not the right to bear arms for ordinary citizens. It's not Oprah, everyone doesn't get a gun. While it's been used to defend the right of personal ownership of every weapon imaginable(I even had one guy who thought he should be able to own a nuke if he so pleased), the second amendment's intent was never wholesale ownership of guns for everyone. The intent was that the federal army could not strip the local militias of their weapons because the local militias were what fought and won the war. Those local militias have been replaced in purpose and duty by the National Guard, under the command of each respective state's Governor. You can argue over who has authority to regulate the sale and possession of firearms and whether or not the ATF is a legitimate entity until you're blue in the face, but there's no argument that guns can't or shouldn't be regulated that isn't predicated on 'Because we want our guns!'

People need to realize this and just accept it. It's okay that states can regulate gun ownership.

It is, really.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:47 am
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Child endangerment can also

Child endangerment can also involve prescription drugs as well. No prescription drugs for people who have children. Hey, over the counter drugs taken in overdose. Geeze, where does it end? You just have a gun problem because I don't see you requesting that aspirin is not allowed to be purchased because of children getting it. Yeah, they do now have those asinine bottle tops. But what about today's kids who seem to commit suicide more frequently than those of us who came along before. I can't believe that I'm reading this stuff from Americans. I guess real Americans have been transformed into un-Americans, but because American has been so forgiving they now feel like they are the new real Americans. My family has been in this country since 1620 and my husband's has been here since 1637. Do not challenge us on what it is to be American!

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:50 am
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Not reading your link. Guns

Not reading your link. Guns have been in my families home for centuries without murders and suicides. Now. Maybe you need to look more into the people with the problems, not the instruments.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 01:51 am
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When did we get away from

When did we get away from personal integrity and responsibility and start blaming the instruments of their own destruction?

oldfella
620
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oldfella 02/04/12 - 02:08 am
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So, we as individuals should

So, we as individuals should be denied the right to own a gun because .0001 percent of the gun owning population isn't stable or responsible enough to own them?

By that rationale nobody should drive, because we all know someone who is a danger behind the wheel, or has been a victim of a tragic auto accident. And the percentage of the driving population involved in deadly car accidents totally eclipses the percentage of gun owners involved in tragic shootings. So, good Reverend - when are you going to beat your vehicles into plowshares? Just sayin'.........

Cdr4500
21
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 02:09 am
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So first you ask me to supply
Unpublished

So first you ask me to supply you a link and then you refuse to read it? Okay....

Jake
36659
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Jake 02/04/12 - 02:13 am
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I think every person born

I think every person born should be issued a gun. That way we could all be equal. I personally do not have any personal integrity but at least I admit to being responsible for it. The only instrument of destruction I can think of is a corkscrew, but what a way to go.

Cdr4500
21
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Cdr4500 02/04/12 - 02:14 am
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The 2nd amendment was written
Unpublished

The 2nd amendment was written at a time when the Continental Army was composed of volunteer militias. Members of those militias had to provide their own weapons, which were routinely muskets, and they were to be under the authority of the President. This continued long after the Continental Army was disbanded in 1784. Until the federal government supplied all of the weapons for the army, in 1791, the 2nd amendment played an important role.

The Framers NEVER foresaw the invention of semi-automatic weapons, nor did they ever think that people would walk into schools and slaughter dozens of kids with them. They never realized violent crime would become a national disgrace and that tens of thousands of people would die every year from guns. If they had, they would have made gun control an integral part of the Constitution.

The argument that everybody has a constitutional right to own a semi-automatic weapon is without merit and a real stretch for anyone who says they're defending the Constitution. Our democracy has endured because men and women have put on the uniform of the country and gone to war to preserve it. It is NOT because of a bunch of gun-lovers who have an emotional attachment to their guns. There have been rebellions in this country's history and they've been put down by the government, thank God.

Gun violence in this country does NOT have to be tolerated to the level it's at, and we can still give people their guns if they want them. Just make them criminally AND financially responsible when they're used irresponsibly and/or criminally, and we'll see serious changes that save thousands of lives and millions of taxpayers' dollars.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:22 am
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I looked at your worthless

I looked at your worthless link and decided not to continue to read it.

Sorry, Jake, my good friend. We just have to disagree as good friends can.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:28 am
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Cdr, what about those gun

Cdr, what about those gun owning and responsible law abiding citizens? Take our guns because there are lose cannons out there? Why not tell which of us citizens are capable of having children and those who are going to be burdens on those of us who pay taxes we don't have to pay for those losers? Look at the whole picture you are advocating.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:31 am
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Jake, I use my corkscrew more

Jake, I use my corkscrew more often than I use my gun and you personally know that!

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:32 am
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Jake, I did tell you about

Jake, I did tell you about Pete, didn't I?

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:36 am
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My husband is serenading me

My husband is serenading me with the bass guitar he made from scratch (electric bass guitar, sort of Paul McCartney style). It's amazing. It's an upright bass string bass made like a Paul Mc bass, but without frets.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 02:39 am
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crd. That ain't flying.

crd. That ain't flying.

desertcat6
1140
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desertcat6 02/04/12 - 03:00 am
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Gotta love it when folks

Gotta love it when folks attempt to over analyze and project intent behind our constitution. "The right to keep and bear arms" outside a militia was settled by the Supreme Court in 2008. People can disagree with the decision, but using arguments already rejected by the court as your basis for position against gun ownership will never gain traction. Accept the ruling, and, if you want to change things, work to get the ammendment changed/revoked. Until then, individual gun ownership regulated by the states is the law of the land.

panamajoe98
0
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panamajoe98 02/04/12 - 03:09 am
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Thank you Cdr for your

Thank you Cdr for your foresight into what the Framers would have thought. I didn't know we had such a visionary among us. By God, they'd have banned alcohol if they'd known we'd have automobiles and 40k DUI deaths/yr. They'd have made this a facist nation had they known how we have been corrupted with all the trappings of modernization.

If you understand the Constitution, you'd realize these men, then, were still much smarter than you. They realized that Utopia does not exist, nor will it ever.

They realized men have shortcomings. They also realized that power in the hands of the people will handle that. Unfortunately, govt has been taking power out of the hands of people. Maybe you should refocus your energy on the more pressing problem.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 03:33 am
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Well said, gentlemen.

Well said, gentlemen.

KSL
164437
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KSL 02/04/12 - 03:40 am
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pj, you just made the Ruth

pj, you just made the Ruth Bader G's point to the Egyptians. Why in the heck is she telling the Egyptians what kind of constitution they need? Who the heck is she to do that? She's definitely not doing them favors going forward and she needs to be minding her own business at the Supreme Court of the US. What a piece of work!

copperhead
1035
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copperhead 02/04/12 - 07:07 am
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To the folks that want gun

To the folks that want gun control-read just a little history! hitler's first move was to take citizen's guns and we all know where that went.

RunningMan
346
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RunningMan 02/04/12 - 07:19 am
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Yes, everyone should be

Yes, everyone should be required to have a government issued ID before being able to purchase a gun. Now that should do it.

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