Long live the NRA, short live the rest of us

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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Twenty more children gunned down. Let's hear it for the NRA and the pointless misguided defenders of the Second Amendment.

Let's get the "This is an insanity issue, not a gun control issue" defense, out of way right away. Obviously this armed gunman was insane. But how much damage could this insane person have done with a knife? Think he could have killed 27 people? Twenty children? Please don't duck that question. Just give me a number.

How many innocents (who died because of the millions spent defending this perpetrators' right to commit mayhem) could have been stabbed in the Portland mall? The Colorado movie theatre? This Connecticut school?

What is it going to take for the NRA to quit whining about why they defend the right to allow this to happen? Is there a body count that has not yet been reached? Will it take one of their own children to be senselessly slaughtered before some sanity starts to creep into the collective consciousness of these arrogant, misguided zealots?

I know the comments that will come from this. Heard them a million times before. They will make just as much sense as they always have. None. And yet more people keep dying. More children keep having their lives cut short.

Long live the NRA.

For the rest of us to live long, I suggest home schooling, online shopping and Netflix.

Let the misguided whining begin.

Bernie Pitzel

Oak Park

Reader Comments

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Chuck05 from Richmond  

Posted: March 18th, 2013 6:12 PM

To answer the Knife question - a disturbed individual in chin killed 28 people with a knife. Check it out

Brian Sims  

Posted: January 28th, 2013 8:47 AM

Bombs are illegal, but wackos still make them and kill people. Make a law and the bad, or crazy people will still figure out how to break them and kill innocent people. Where's the news about innocent, law abiding citizens, with legal gun permits, stopping bad people? Well, it's out there, but a left sided news wants nothing to do with it, so do your research and stop being a puppet. When I'm being shot at I would like a gun.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 20th, 2013 9:58 AM

Jim- My comment about Ed Meese was related to his comments about Obamas disregard for the Constitution, he swore to uphold, and the possibility of impeachment for lying. You injected the NRA and what you perceive to be disqualification, of a former AG, for not toeing your line. I certainly give AG Meese far more credibility than our current AG who is being held in contempt of congress for failing his lawful duty. BTW Bush and Cheney have been out of office 4 years and yet you justify every dishonest, underhanded and bad act by obama by pointing out things you think Bush did wrong. You cannot blame Bush for the continuing jobless rate, "Fast and Furious". Benghazi., The higher taxes we are all seeing from Obama care and soaking the job creators. Members of congress are starting to see what a ruthless, self serving narcissist we have in the White House and I hope they are about to grow a spine and reassert their constitutional obligations.

Geno Murphy from Bellevue WA  

Posted: January 18th, 2013 3:01 PM

Bernie you cannot understand the second ammendment! We cannot fix your stupidity!

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 9:35 PM

Don't make Ed Meese your go-to- guy on gun issues, Ray. He's been paid by the NRA to deliver speeches at their sponsored events. Meese is just repeating what he's been told to say. If Bush and Cheney weren't impeached for war profiteering during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, I doubt Congress would be up to the task to take any action against President Obama. Plus, it would not be a smart move by the GOP to engaged in a grandstanding exercise while ignoring the real issues that concern most Americans.

No common sense  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 9:01 PM

@uncommon sense. You point out that car wrecks and guns account for approximately the same number of deaths each year. You state that anyone with half a brain can google to check the facts. This half brain googled and found out that there are about 3 times as many car owners as gun owners in the US. Wouldn't that make guns 3x more dangerous than cars? just facts. Check your math.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 5:52 PM

MO I think you just made my case for me. Gibberish

MichaelO from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 5:30 PM

It's a modifier, Ray. Goofballs is a modifier. In other words, not all target shooters but the assault weapon heroes who wrap themselves in the 2nd amendment without knowing what the hell it means. Those goofballs. The ones who ignore prefatory clauses and pretend that when tyranny threatens the common good they will be our first and best line of defense, with their goofball weapons.


Posted: January 15th, 2013 2:59 PM

Internet 101: Increasing traffic to your website: Post NRA article. Endless back-and-forth will not change core beliefs of posters but will ensure repeated hits from handful of posters, further enlightenment to site viewers will not be obtained, people will tire of comments board inundated w/ comments on same article and eventually ignore, article will fade away...REPEAT!

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 2:46 PM

Michael O - "Target shooting goof balls?" Why do you negate any good point by acting school yard childish? There are never any meaningful dialog with you because you ALWAYS resort to name calling. I am sure you believe you are scoring points by pointing out that my stockings don't match - most here just roll our eyes and discount anything you might present.

MichaelO from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 1:03 PM

I'll give up my car, but you got to give me a ride.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 12:38 PM

Would any of the gun control folks be willing to give up their cars to prevent drunk driving deaths? All life is precious, right? About the same number of deahts from DUIs/car crashes as guns, so if we just get rid of all cars, those deaths could be prevented! No one needs a porsche! Why do you need to drive faster than 55? Your right to drive should not supercede te community's safety! Give up your cars for the greater good.

MichaelO from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 12:27 PM

Gee whiz, if they ban AR-15s then all the target shooting goof balls will have to get another hobby. It's just like when they started enforcing the anti-littering laws and I couldn't run down all the damn squirrels with my car anymore.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 12:23 PM

Ray, that is my guess. The left has be allowed to manufacture vague terms such as assault weapon and no one in our half ass media will even force them to be specific, nor point out that there is no such thing. Anyone even remotely unbiased can uncover the facts with a simple Google search. Their definition will most likely be broad enough to encompass pretty much any gun. Of course, the low information voters don't know any better hence we get hysterics like Mr. Pitzel's letter.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 11:17 AM

uncommon - a phony cork and string in the barrel? A Red Ryder medallion on the stock? Mold all plastic parts in primary colors? My fear is that Obama will redefine semi-autos as automatic weapons and regulate under the class 3 rules. That would eliminate 95 percent of all handguns in the US.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 10:07 AM

I'm expecting some kind of registration and universal national background checks. Then we will see a move to ban "assault weapons" i.e., scary looking guns. Neither of which would prevent any mass murders or gun violence, but of course it will help the left's self esteem that they at least tried something, no matter how illogical, devoid of facts, or ineffective the result. My guess is AR-15 mfg's will just have to make them look less military like...

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 8:45 AM

In an interview Ed Meese AG for RR intimated that Obama using Executive Orders to go around congress and the Constitution, on gun control, is flirting with Articles of Impeachment. A sharp stick in the eye of your prosecutors, House of representatives, and your jury, Senate, is not a smart move. We will know in the next couple of days.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 9:41 PM

Jim - if you are expecting anything fair or constitutional out of the Biden group - that bridge at Ike and Oak Park Ave. deed is still for sale.Biden has already telegraphed where his heart is and the second amendment will more than likely take a hit. I hope not but I am not buying any bridges.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 9:28 PM

Ray, glad to hear that you were able to get a quick response from the NRA. I look forward to reading the answers they provide to those questions about efforts to lift the bans on machine gun and armor piercing bullets. Good work!

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 9:25 PM

Steve, let's wait for the task group, chaired by Vice President Biden, to release their recommendations. There's been a lot of speculation but not much in the way of specifics.

Steve from Mount Airy  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 8:18 PM

..continued.. SO.. Now, you tell me, exactly what law would you pass, which would prevent an insane person who already has displayed that he is completely willing to break all the OTHER laws we already have, while committing his crime? There is literally NOTHING helpful about limiting the law abiding citizen's access to guns, while there are HUGE cases that go largely unreported, where a crime is stopped by a law abiding citizen with a gun.

Steve from Mount Airy MD  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 8:14 PM

OK - I wont duck the question, if you wont either... THe number of people who could have been killed with a knife is... EXACTLY the same.. Show me a classroom full of first graders who couldn't be overcome by a 21 year old INSANE person swinging a large knife... NOW.. Let me tell you why your question is COMPLETELY irrelevant: We have a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT to own guns, and luckily for me, the Constitution doesn't stipulate that YOU have the right to decide which guns I am allowed to own.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 14th, 2013 11:49 AM

Jim- I contacted NRA-ILA today and they stated that there was NO legal action planed or pending related to class 3 firearms (machine guns) and that changing armor piercing bullet regulations are not on their agenda.I have also e-mailed my questions and I will pass the reply on when I get it.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: January 12th, 2013 11:04 PM

I think it's pretty safe to say this isn't a problem.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: January 12th, 2013 11:03 PM

Jim - I think what is missing here is what steps a person would need to take to own an automatic weapon (or other class 3 weapon) privately. You need to be at least 21, of sound mind, not an addict, no felonies, pay a $200 tax, fingerprints, photographs, signature from the chief local law enforcement officer, background investigation from the BATF & FBI, and about a three month wait on getting the whole thing processed. There is only one documented illegal use of a registered class 3 firearm.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 12th, 2013 12:33 PM

Ray, if you contact the NRA, they will inform you of of their support for "the right of law abiding citizens to own machine guns". Simple way to prove me wrong and a reasonable solution to address your concerns about unreliable sources. The facts are not something I pulled out of thin air but learned from reading about and listening to NRA positions on existing and proposed gun laws. Take the NRA's word for it and please share their response. And ask them about armor piercing bullets at the same time. I'll be interested in reading about what you've learned.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 12th, 2013 10:38 AM

Jim- Machine guns - Why would the NRA expend money to make owning machine guns legal for US citizens when in fact they are already legal. Just impossibly hard to get the required federal license and impossibly expensive to buy. The better route would be to join the army or find one of the hand full or ranges that will rent you the experience. You seem to be asking me to prove a negative. You are quite vocal about the NRA's overt activity to remove machine gun regulations. I get the NRA magazine and the ILA bulletins and have never seen a word about what you claim. Armor piercing bullets - again I see nothing in the NRA legal action agenda even remotely close to what you seem to know as fact. Again you are asking me to prove a negative. The advocates of strict gun control have, in the past, defined a particular gun or bullet design as illegal - then expanded the definition to include the entire universe. The NRA resists those loose definitions because they have learned from past experience. You have made a claim that I cannot disprove - just as you cannot provide any reference to actual actions by the NRA . Please do not provide references by Huffington Post, Salon. com or move on.org. and I will not quote FOX news.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 9:08 PM

We agree. Knee jerk reactions never produce the desired result. Background checks and closing loopholes in the law will help. I've also read of a proposal to produce handguns that will be specially encoded to be operable only by the person who purchases the weapon. Seems like a smart move to counter the blackmarket, straw purchases, accidental use by children and stolen guns. The key is going to be to get manufacturers and wholesalers onboard.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 6:14 PM

Jim, I don't have a problem with limiting bulk ammo purchase and universal background checks. But again, neither really address the problem of overall gun violence. Thugs don't get background checks or use high capacity clips. The few mental nut jobs who want to shoot up a shopping mall will also find away around as well. I prefer smart legistlation and enforcement of current laws as opposed to knee jerk reactions that we typically get from politicians and activist that just "feel good"

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 6:03 PM

UnCommon, Mark McKinnon, a respected republican media consultant, supports making gun trafficking a felony, law enforcement notification of large purchases of ammo and requiring universal background checks for gun buyers.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 5:12 PM

So given the data in the table, handguns are significantly more threat than any "assault rifle" will ever be. FOUR TIMES as many people are killed by knives than assault rifles. Logically, any legislation on gun control needs ot focus on handguns, yet all we hear from the left is assault weapons/rifles. This clearly shows you folks have No Freaking Clue what you are talking about in regards to guns. Fact: The AR-15 at Sandy Hook was left in his car. He used two handguns.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 4:40 PM

the vast majority of murders are thug on thug crimes which makes the data in the table even more damning to the left's position and shows how hysterical/emotional they are over events that are statistically irrelevant. 323 people killed with MILLIONS of AR-15 style rifles owned by the public, yet it is supposed to be an epidemic??? Some of you need to take some basic math and logic classes. I'm sure hearts are in the right places, but your heads are in another.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 4:30 PM

More people were murdered by bare knuckles in 2011 than "assault rifles" according to the FBI. See this clear table: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-8 2011 had only 323 deaths by rifles of any kind versus 728 beatings. So given that there are so few murders related to assault rifles, why are gun grabbers so focused on "assault weapons" bans and AR-15 style rifles? Facts simple don't matter to liberals.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 3:49 PM

Observer - You are a piece of work who can"t even take the time to read correctly. Jefferson would be talking to you when he said "it is as useless to disagree with those who have renounced the use & authority of reason as to administer medication to the dead. Hope you & your family never encounter a situation you could have been better prepared for. Have a nice life.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 3:39 PM

Observer, according to a recent book on the history of the 2nd amendment, the first well regulated militias were charged with making sure that slaves in southern states did possess any weapons. This was in response to violent rebellions by slaves in Virginia, South Carolina and Georgia. The intent of those who proposed the 2nd amendment was to guarantee that the northern states could not interfere with the lucrative slave trade that was well established in the southern states but faced increasing criticism from John Jay and Alexander Hamilton.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 3:28 PM

I'm afraid you got some bad information, Ray. Perhaps you would prefer to contact the NRA for clarification. The oganization is actively engaged and solciting signatures in an effort to allow private citizens to purchase and use armor piercing bullets. They NRA is seeking to overturn the ban on owning a machine gun. I didn't make this stuff up but shared it as you are someone who professes to support responsible laws regarding gun ownership and use. I don't blame NRA members for the recent massacres but expect those who want to keep weapons out the hands of criminals and disturbed persons to support the restrictions the NRA is seeking to overturn. If you can provide a statement from the NRA that disputes the information i've posted; please share it via this forum.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 3:05 PM

RJ, I stand by my comments. You are the one who is incapable of fully understanding the gun issue. You admit that you are paranoid and paranoid people generally cannot think rationally, so thank you for proving my point. Please talk to your doctor about Paranoid Personality Disorder (http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/paranoid-personality-disorder). I just hope you don't own a gun because that is a mental illness and the mentally ill should not own guns.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 2:27 PM

Observer - I assume you would prefer not to hear real people speaking the truth about something you've proven you are incapable of fully understanding nor want to. 'Paranoid' because I acknowledge that history has documented millions of unarmed people eliminated at the hands of tyrants. Perhaps you better rethink that 'uneducated, pathetic' slander you toss at others. Paranoid because I acknowledge the millions of people exterminated through history at the hands of tyrants


Posted: January 11th, 2013 1:56 PM

I prefer to get my facts from reputable news sources such as the Christian Science Monitor and academic studies, not YouTube and NRAIS1. Seriously, you are really uneducated and pathetic if you believe YouTube over the Christian Science Monitor. Here is an academic study that proves you are wrong and possibly even paranoid. http://andrewleigh.org/pdf/GunBuyback_Panel.pdf

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 1:55 PM

Jim - FYI "The "existing laws" were adopted in 1986 and prohibit the manufacture and importation, for private use, of handgun bullets made of special, hard metals and (in a 1994 amendment) specially-jacketed lead bullets. These bullets were invented for use by law enforcement and military personnel. NRA helped draft the 1986 provisions and didn`t object to the 1994 amendment. (;18 U.S.C. 922(a)(7) and (8), and (b)(5), and 921(a)(17)(B) and (C)) and once again Machine Guns are not promoted by the NRA or is the law regulating their ownership ever challenged. You claim the nobel effort to find the truth - then you couch your questions from the perspective that it is all the NRA's fault. Pretty lousy fairness in my book. I do not deny you your right to believe anything you wish. I will tell you when you are factually wrong.

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 1:41 PM

Piers Morgan getting destroyed last night debating gun control. http://townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2013/01/11/friday-fun-ben-shapiro-destroys-cnns-piers-morgan-n1487128


Posted: January 11th, 2013 1:12 PM

Observer- And by the way - history proves gun registration is always the back door to ultimate confiscation. Is that what you want?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 1:12 PM

Observer, the point RJ made about defining "home invasion" is that the Australian govt refuses to do so because it would cause crime stats to go through the roof. Home invasions increased alarmingly after people were disarmed. Further, a reduction in mass shooting would occur if all guns are banned. However, despite the news coverage, mass shootings have never been common. So very rare mass shootings were traded for a huge increase in common robberies, rapes and home invasions.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 12:51 PM

Really Observer - YouTube-Australians to US - Don't Give Up Your Guns. Maybe you should hear from them directly, The British and even the Russians - who knew- have warned the same.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 11th, 2013 12:19 PM

If I'm reading you right, Ray. You support the NRA for "the good work they do" and do not object to their ongoing efforts to overturn the bans on armor piercing ammo or private ownership of machine guns. Is it safe to assume you oppose closing the gun show loophole?


Posted: January 11th, 2013 11:29 AM

RJ, just your facts straight before you post! Australia's gun-related homicides dropped 59% and gunpoint robberies dropped significantly. There has not been one mass shooting since 1996, when Australia passed strong gun laws. 85% of Australian's support their gun control measures. Crime is not running rampant in Australia as you allude. Stick with the facts and stop fear mongering. Facts http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Asia-Pacific/2012/1224/Could-the-US-learn-from-Australia-s-gun-control-laws.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 10:54 AM

Australians urging US not to give up their guns because it's your freedoms you give up & God given rights to protect yourself. 640,000 of their guns confiscated at a cost of $1/2B. Now robberies up 69%, gun assaults up 28%, gun robberies up 19% & home invasions up 21%. hand guns, allowed locked up & unloaded. Courts also can't seem to define home invasion. Police leaving the force as crime is out of control and courts are useless.


Posted: January 11th, 2013 10:16 AM

Second Amendment: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." People who keep and bear guns are part of a militia, according to the Second Amendment. This militia must be regulated. Requiring all guns owners to obtain a license, obtain insurance to cover injuries sustained by guns, and requiring the guns to be registered annually would not violate the second amendment to the Constitution.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:25 PM

Jim- You seem not to understand that "Machine Guns" are controlled by the government, since before I was born. You cannot own or posses one without a federal license. As for armor piercing bullets - who decides. Years ago it was a lead bullet with a cross filed in the nose and rubbed in garlic - brought terror to the minds of young kids who didn't know better.It would be a wonderful world if armies, police, Militias and home defense was unnecessary , You are fooling yourself if you believe that centuries of human history will change and those dreams come true. I defend the NRA because I am a member and I have seen the good work they do first hand. The NRA is a convenient scapegoat for avoiding admitting that we have some basic sociological problems in our society. Blame them and move on. To easy - and without any factual data to prove your case.

Concerned Oak Parker from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:56 PM

I fully support the banning of assault rifles and I think that gun registration needs to be stricter. I would like to see a buyout program, as well. I believe that most people now support this idea and I hope it passes. These are reasonable actions and will not harm anyone's liberty, except the right to be shot randomly.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:37 PM

Armor piercing bullets pose a threat to law enforcement and private ownership of a machine gun needs to be prohibited. I don't have the knowledge of weapons that you are able to share but some things like banning certain ammo and weapons just makes sense. How you view other lobbying groups' activities has been noted and debated via this forum on numerous occasions. I'm interested in focusing on the NRA's overall mission which does not seem to be solely based on protecting 2nd amendment rights. The link between the NRA and gun manufacturers and wholesalers should not be ignored. I doubt responsible gun owners like yourself support efforts to make armor piercing bullets and machine guns available for sale to the general public. Hope I'm not wrong about you.


Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:03 PM


Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 7:17 PM

Jim - may I offer an example The 45 caliber Nosler round is jacketed hollow point and you would classify it as an anti personnel round. The dynamics of Noslers are such that a high master like national champion Brian Zinns can put ten rounds in a drink coaster size bullseye at half a football field distance,.standing, one handed. I assume that it would be classified a able to penetrate body armor, but it is still one of the most accurate, consistent rounds fired from a 1911. The union examples I cite is to point out that I might be just as outraged by their political activities as you are toward the NRA.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 6:41 PM

Come on ,Ray. You have described yourself as being a well trained and responsible gun owner. What's the justification to allow private citizens to use armor piercing bullets or own machine guns? The NRA is not acting the best interest of the public or promoting gun safety by actively seeking to overturn those bans. I wonder if the NRA mission is first and foremost about protecting the 2nd amendment, personal protection and hunting for sport or spreading fear in order to increase corporate profits for manufacturers and wholesalers who provide the bulk of the NRA's funding. I don't see the unions you cited engaging in practices that pose such an obvious threat to public welfare. You seem to offer a reasonable view on gun rights, so it's hard to understand why you would not object to the NRA efforts regarding ammo laws and machine gun access.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 1:38 PM

Jim- The NRA receives zero tax dollars and is a lobby group - no argument.. How are they any more evil than the the teachers union that holds the future of our children hostage every time they want more money?The UAW that demands a worker get a dollar to do a job that is worth no more than a nickel in the final product? The SEIU that puts millions into election cycles without regard to the beliefs of their members? There are a lot of special interest groups out there that are far kinkier than the NRA.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 12:37 PM

Thanks for the correction, Bernie. It seems to me that the NRA is dealing with a serious public relations problem. While professing to represent the interests of responsible gun owners and enthusiasts like Ray Simpson; in reality, the NRA behaves much differently. No valid reason for them to oppose the ban on an armor -piercing bullet or taking action to overturn laws that prohibit the private ownership of machine guns. Much of their efforts seemed tied to protecting the profits of gun manufacturers and wholesalers. Accepting direct donations of upwards of $50 million from those parties raises serious questions if they are really about the 2nd amendment or the corporate bottom line. Politics aside, it looks like the NRA is just a very well funded lobbying group for those entities who profit from the sale of weapons to the public. The training and safety classes they promote are a benefit but not enough to overshadow some of their more nefarious attempts to influence legislation and policy.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 12:16 PM

Jim - I can see it in my mind - being able to communicate the rational isn't so easy. If it was this whole thing could be resolved instantly and both sides might find some comfort.


Posted: January 10th, 2013 12:09 PM

Bernie - Yes, certain things were just a given even back then. One doesn't fight England & lay down their arms. Then they probably realized somewhere along the way there would be Toms and Bernies that would challenge this God given right to protect ourselves and the rest is history. An amendment would never fly -hence the hint of a dictatorial executive order. Clearly outside the realm of any executive jurisdiction.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 12:07 PM

Okay,Ray. I think I got your answer. Still it is confusing to me that the founding fathers would seek to have a citizens' militia to be well regulated but not detail how that responsibilty would be enforced. They could have intended it to be self regulated but instead chose the term well regulated. In my opinion, court rulings have not provided clarity. Perhaps it may be on the table or up for discussion when Vice President Biden's committee studies the issues. Thanks for your input.


Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:45 AM

Tom - As long as you always resort to name calling I will now affectionately refer to you as the official Moonbat of RF. No Prez has the right to entertain or implement any executive order in regard to the Bill of Rights. It would be unconstitutional. If you lefties would just stick to the wisdom of the Constitution you wouldn't always appear so dazed and confused.

Bernie from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:43 AM

Sorry Jim. Didn't mean to include you in that group. As for rj, and the rest of the historically challenged, the original US Constitution said nothing about the right of the public to bear arms. That was an a-mend-ment introduced 4 years later. Get the difference? Constitution-Amendment to the Constitution. No reason there can't be another amendment. Now as much as I'd like to continue this banter, in the immortal words of Woody Allen, "I'm due back on planet earth"

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:42 AM

Jim- I also believe that the term "Regulate" during the framing meant to make regular or unimpeded by outside influences. The current definition is worlds apart from that intent.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:39 AM

Tom- Allow the government to disarm the people and we will find out posthaste. "A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." - John Stuart Mill I can say that I've done my part.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:36 AM

Jim- I like "The entire able-bodied population of a community, town, county, or state, available to be called to arms" Nothing to do with hunting, home defense, or doing harm to others.It is you and your neighbors standing strong against a mutual threat. That threat could be the government, gang bangers or any one of a number of bad people.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:18 AM

Bernie, I just read your posting that asks if I'm "all good with public access to assualt rifles" Not sure why you decided to include my name in the group. I merely posed a question to Ray specifally about the use of the term "well-regulated" as it applies to the militia. There are things that I think need to be considered regarding to gun ownership and public safety but have not advocated any position that mirrors the opinions expressed by Larry, Ray or Anonymous.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 11:07 AM

Sorry, Ray. You may have missed the point of my question. I was not arguing but wondering what you consider to be the definition of a well regulated militia. Correct me if I'm wrong but you didn't respond to that specifically. How is the militia regulated and is it the responsibilty of the state and/or federal governments to provide that oversight? My intent is not to engage in a debate about the 2nd amendment nor gun owners rights. I know there are published opinions on the subject but thought it would interesting to get your view. Thanks again.

Tom from River Forest  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:55 AM

I love how gun nuts shroud themselves in their apparent love for our forefathers while ignoring that the two times that the forefathers had a chance to put down armed insurrection against tyranny, namely Shay's rebellion and the Whiskey Rebellion, the forefathers immediately put down those efforts by use of force. Do any of these nubjobs actually think that a federal government bent on their destruction would be really be dissuaded by the threat of their guns. Laughable really.


Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:43 AM

Since Jefferson was speaking through the lens of the age of enlightenment I'm pretty sure he could have directed this quote to the left today, "it is useless to argue with those who have renounced the use & authority of reason as to administer medicine to the dead".


Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:26 AM

The most important piece of this issue is the Constitution. The left has no love or appreciation of it. They would rather have our rights confiscated to finish off this country as the banana republic it's fast becoming. They would have less of a problem having a gun aimed at them by a dictator than law abiding citizens being able to protect themselves under any circumstances. They're all for over reaching, almighty G not individual rights. Pathetic. They can't help themselves.

Bernie from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 10:25 AM

Just some fun gun facts. 54% of firearm-related deaths occurred in the home where the gun was kept 70.5% of these (firearm-related deaths in the home where the gun was kept) involved handguns 0.5% of these (firearm-related deaths in the home where the gun was kept) involved an intruder shot while attempting entry 1.8% of these (firearm-related deaths in the home where the gun was kept) were judged by police as self-defense. Pretty sure the bad guys aren't too worried about you and your guns

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:59 AM

Bernie, do you accept the premise that in a nation of 350 million people, that no amount of laws will prevent all murder and mayhem? Or do you feel that all deaths of innocent folks are unacceptable and therefore we must ban everything to try to prevent those deaths? If that is the case, why don't you ban other things that cause just as much death as guns? Cars? Swimming Pools? Alcohol? Knives? Bats? Airplanes? Steps? Lightening? Motorcycles?

Bernie from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:46 AM

Ray, Either you have a very short memory or you just block this stuff out but here's a pretty recent example of a 100 round drum used to massacre people. By NBC News staff The four weapons that authorities say were used in the massacre at a Colorado theater showing of the latest Batman movie included a popular semiautomatic rifle, a .223-caliber assault-style rifle with a 100-round drum magazine. How many more examples, or deaths by assault rifles, do you need?

Uncommon Sense  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:43 AM

Facts don't mean much to the gun grabbers. Here is a little tidbit. Out of all the gun homicides, less than 400 are committed by "rifles." There SEVERAL MILLION ar-15 style rifles in public hands. I know math is hard for people on the left, but just let that marinate to put all the hang wringing about "assault rifles" in perspective. Not too mention, the left can't even define the term just like they can never seem to get specific about fair share when discussing taxes.

Tom from River Forest  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:42 AM

No Ray, the Federalist Papers were an ad campaign by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay to sell the constitution to the states for ratification. In fact of the 76 different arguments, 51 were written by Hamilton, who I might add believed in much broader federal power than you. They do not reflect the universal views of all 55 signers of the constitution and in fact, Hamilton's views on the new govt were antithetical to the Jeffersonians.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:21 AM

Jim- the Federalist papers explain that the founders were worried about the possibility of tyranny in our government and felt that the right to "alter or abolish it" required citizens to be armed. The definitions used in the pre-Constitution era have evolved to have different shading of meanings in modern times. The essence of the ideas remains unchanged. The high courts have put down your "militia" argument and that is settled law I assume.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 9:00 AM

Bernie - can you define assault weapons? Washington is about to say that any gun, where the bullets come out sorta fast, is an assault weapon. Most gun development happens in the military where function and reliability are the principal consideration. The civilian market is a benefactor of those improvements and the look and feel just migrate with the product development.I assume that many of the molds and tooling serve both groups. I agree that 100 round clips are not a necessity and they seem to be owned by people who love to make ammo manufacturers rich. I know of no mass murders where a 100 round drum was used other than the St Valentines day massacre on Wells St

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 8:44 AM

Jim - If enforced the laws we have would be a good start. Convicted felons - prohibited, Order of Protection - prohibited. mentally ill people - prohibited. Unsupervised minors - prohibited. Minors convicted of weapons felony tried and sentenced as adults with no plea possibility. All of these laws exist. Why spend money on new legislation that will just be ignored like all of the rest? Politicians love to tell you that when you send them back to Washington, the next law they pass will solve the worlds woes. Believe that and I will let you in on a deed to the Oak Park Ave. Ike bridge that I can let you have cheap.

Bernie from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 7:52 AM

So Larry, Jim, Anonymous and Ray...You're all good with public access to assault rifles, like the one used to gun down not only the children of Sandy Hook or the students and the armed guard at Columbine but countless other slaughters? And 100 round drums? Why's that?

Bernie from Oak Park  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 7:11 AM

Hey anonymous Oak Parker..."By the end of the man's rampage, at least 23 elementary students were wounded, China's state-run Xinhua news agency reported. The knife attack at Chenpeng Village Primary School in China's Henan province took place on December 14, the same day an American gunman killed 20 student and six educators at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut." Hardly sounds as just as much damage. Might want to ask the parents of Sandy Hook victims. if they agree.

Larry Skiver from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 1:25 AM

I was wondering if anyone has heard of the term "foot in the door". When the door is shut you have control on what comes through the door. When someone gets their foot in the door you don't. Let's think about this, I don't smoke and I think it's a nasty habit, so let's tax the hell out of it. That's okay with me because I don't smoke. Yeah good for society-less smokers-better health-less doctor visits for smoke related issues. More tax money in the coffers, good. While we are at it, let's tax the hell out of alcohol. I don't drink so it is ok with me. Yeah more money, we'll teach those smokers and drinkers. So when the tax man comes around to something you do care about and wants to tax the hell out it , then what are you going to do?. Society has the foot in the door and your way of life is threatened. So here we have a true tragedy with the School shootings. Right away some people are calling for the ban on guns or stricter gun control laws (which have not worked). If we jump to fast and ban guns and change the second the govt. has their "foot in the door". Hey while we are at it let's change the nasty first amendment, the people let us change the 2nd amendment so let's change that one too. By the way we'll just change them all because we know what's best. Be careful what you wish for.

Jim Coughlin from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 10th, 2013 12:17 AM

Ray, will you share what you believe the founding fathers intended when they called for a well regulated militia? Regulated by the state or federal governments? What type of regulation can and should be enforced? Thanks.

Oak Parker  

Posted: January 9th, 2013 11:16 PM

Your opinions about gun owners and 2nd Amendment supporters are as misguided as the opinions of people who think that all Muslims are responsible for the terror attacks on September 11th, 2001.

Oak Parker  

Posted: January 9th, 2013 11:13 PM

"What is it going to take for the NRA to quit whining about why they defend the right to allow this to happen?" Nobody has the right to murder anyone. And the NRA is not arguing for that. The right to bear arms does not grant someone the right to murder someone. Its disappointing that the Wednesday Journal actually publishes rants like this. Its a real testament to the decline of the publication's quality of the years.

Oak Parker  

Posted: January 9th, 2013 11:09 PM

"Obviously this armed gunman was insane. But how much damage could this insane person have done with a knife?" On the same day that the tragedy in CT unfolded, a madman in China went about a similar act of violence with a knife... the answer to your question is just as much.

Ray Simpson from Oak Park  

Posted: January 9th, 2013 11:35 AM

Exactly how is the NRA responsible for any of these tragedies? The liberal left demand mental health conditions be confidential - that isn't important. You deflect the argument from the real problem to a boogie man of your own creation. You demand intense gun training to qualify for gun ownership - where do you think those highly qualified instructors come from? The gold standard certified instructors come from the NRA. Why in the world would an organization dedicated to safety training for youth, women and instructors support the wild eyed mayhem of Conn or Colorado?

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