Hate the gun, shun the gun owner?

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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I note the rapidity and zeal with which St. Edmund is moving to prohibit legal firearm possession on church premises. This is clearly their right under the recently passed Illinois concealed-carry law.

I am surprised that John Barrett is pushing this measure because he was a member of the Gun Rights and Responsibilities Committee discussion group (GRRC).

He and his responsibilitist ilk all agreed that the vast majority of gun violence is done by criminals/gang members, the dangerous mentally ill (DMI) and the suicidal. They also learned that the rate of gun violence among the 8 million concealed-carry permit holders in the nation is less than 1% of the general population.

In the interest of reducing the non-existent gun violence on the premises of St. Edmund, shouldn't felons, DMIs, the suicidal and gang members also be prohibited?

Or is the real intent to make a public statement that St. Edmund does not believe law-abiding citizens should be allowed to own guns? It is impossible to reach agreement when one or both sides won't tell each other what they really want.

By their own words, the responsibilitists say they support legal firearm possession by lawful citizens. But their actions certainly appear to be guided by a hatred of guns and aimed at no guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens. They are in favor of legal gun possession in general but opposed to every specific instance.

So what do the responsibilitists really want?

In the GRRC meetings, all movement toward reducing gun violence was tripped up by behind-the-discussion efforts to ban guns. The responsibilitists talked-the-talk of reducing gun violence but behaved as though they hated guns and want no one to have guns.

No problem, just say so! We can still work to reduce gun violence!

But not if one side secretly works to ban guns regardless and hides their efforts behind the curtain of reducing gun violence and protecting the children! The responsibilitists can continue to hate guns and believe no one should have guns. And gun owners can still work to keep their legally owned guns.

If we separate the gun possession/gun ban issue from the issue of gun violence, we can still work together to reduce gun violence.

John Erickson

Oak Park

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Ray Simpson from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: February 14th, 2014 1:31 PM

@ Pete - we are working on it! In a recent column Ken Trainor claimed that we spent a year getting to know them - what he failed to mention was in that same year, his side never heard a word we said, never conceded a single point and never agreed that the problem is not the gun but the person doing bad things.

Pete Flanagan from Downers Grove, Illinois  

Posted: February 12th, 2014 5:24 AM

As I've said many times before, the gun grabbers really don't care much about reducing so-called "gun violence." The purpose of gun control, and the mission of the gun control movement, is to eradicate a bloc of voters that traditionally and reliably supports socially conservative points of view. The gun controllers feel that, if they are able to eliminate privately held firearms, then this socially conservative bloc has nothing to rally around and, thus, will eventually dissolve. Gun owners need to keep in mind that the gun controllers have a deep-seated hatred for firearms and the people who own them. Gun controllers aren't interested in reason; they care not about facts; and their claimed quest for middle ground on the issue is nothing but a diversionary tactic. The war over private firearm ownership will not end until one side or the other is totally defeated. Therefore, gun owners must never take their eye off the goal of destroying the gun control movement.

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