Letters: Vigilantism crosses line
January 15, 2013 9:12PM
Updated: February 17, 2013 6:06AM
Recent tragedies have made us desperate for quick-fix solutions for the ever-escalating violence. There are none. That doesn’t mean we throw up the white flag of defeat, only that all pros and cons must be weighed carefully, rather than rushing to decisions.
As for arming teachers, even with Tasers, where does vigilance cross the line to vigilantism? How much gun control and repression may be exercised before becoming a police state?
If no limits are placed on freedom, does anarchy take over? The technicalities to be dealt with truly boggle the mind. The issues of today are every bit as pressing as the challenges faced by our Founding Fathers and any proposed measures will be met with avalanches of protest and criticism.
Mayhem is not restricted to “gun play” either. Disasters of equal scope occur without a shot being fired. In recent decades, we’ve seen a woman commit mass murder by driving her car down a crowded Reno, Nev., sidewalk, and a man in Japan unleashed a toxic chemical agent in a crowded railway terminal. Entire cities could be wiped out by crazed loners contaminating water supplies.
The madness around us now eclipses anything that even Nostradamus ever could have envisioned.
Make guns too costly
The right to bear arms appears too imbedded in our minds to ever change. It is a holy cow, never to be touched. We can control gun ownership in other ways, and still leave the right to bear arms alone.
All we have to do is make it too costly to own guns. This can be done by having each jurisdiction (city, county, state or federal government) to establish laws or ordinances to buy, register or own a gun. Each permit to own a gun and yearly license would be expensive as would be the penalties for failure to register the weapon. All would-be gun owners would have to be mentally competent, and take a test, or be trained to handle guns.
Anytime a youth uses a gun, they must request ownership or usage under parental or guardian responsibility. Each jurisdiction would establish what weapons would be tolerated, thus eliminating war weapons and automatic guns. Sportsmen would be qualified to won the guns they use in their sport, at lower fees, provided they met controls of their jurisdiction.
Not only would this program limit the ownership of guns, it would garner a significant amount of revenue. The National Rifle Association could not object too seriously, especially in view of what has happened in a number of our schools and over the country. This method of control does not deny anyone who is qualified to own a gun. It will only mean they will have to pay more for the privilege.