Last updated: February 28. 2013 11:16PM - 2089 Views

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Obama wrong

on gun control

I do not believe President Obama’s gun control plan should be considered. I do believe people, through government, can decide what sort of weaponry they want to have in public. It is legitimate for people to discuss limiting the lethality of weapons available to the general public, but not for reasons being currently stated.

To begin, this president has been stating an outright lie since he first ran for president. When first campaigning in this Commonwealth, I heard him state directly that he has no opposition to firearms for hunting or self defense. This is a lie and it is one that he should be called on. He cited his own “hometown,” Chicago, as a reason for his efforts to control gun ownership. However, Chicago, like D.C., had a virtual ban on individuals owning pistols in their own homes until the recent Supreme Court decision struck this down. Barak Obama is on record supporting Chicago’s virtual ban on law abiding citizens keeping guns in their homes for their own protection. It is worth noting that every single city where gun control advocates have won the government, these cities have banned gun ownership of even completely non criminal citizens in the effort to disarm criminals. Thus it happened that in every one of these places, only criminals and police had guns. These same people, including the president, then come out and call people who oppose gun control alarmist and extremist for suspecting that they really intend to ban all firearms. Their own record of governance proves as much. This is also the same man who called Pennsylvania gun owners “bitter clingers.”

What is even more troubling is the fact that many of these gun control advocates are urban politicians who have completely failed to keep their own constituents safe from violent crime in spite of banning firearms. What is heart breaking is the stories of unspeakable violence coming from places like Chicago. Chicago is a model of how not to do things, and its politicians like, Barak Obama, should be ashamed of themselves. While they have had one party rule for nearly four decades, and all ideas are coming from one source with almost complete control over every aspect of life there, violence, especially in non-white neighborhoods, is uncontrollable. Yet there is this total reliance on blaming outsiders and not holding local politicians accountable for their own failed policies. This is no more evident than the recent shooting of two innocent teenagers, one of whose parents recently attended the President’s State of the Union address. While I do not believe I can tell these parents what to make of their tremendous loss, it still brings up nagging questions. Why can’t these parents have the same safety that President Obama has for his family? There are no restrictions on where the secret service can carry their firearms in protecting his daughters. Why is it that people in urban areas, who vote almost unquestionably Democratic, can’t even hold their own politicians accountable for their failed policies on policing and crime and punishment? Instead they allow these politicians to use their victimization to blame gun owners in other parts of the country, people who have nothing to do with their own home grown violence. The entire argument is one of irresponsible politicians who don’t seem to have any idea what to do about their own complete failures in their cities so they blame gun owners, whom they stereotype as ignorant fanatics. To allow elitist politicians to disarm us and enable criminal gangs to run rampant as they have in Chicago and almost every other major city is untenable. These people are not as smart as they think they are and they are not very compassionate either, despite their rhetoric, towards those who suffer under their failed policies to curb gun violence.

Joseph Martin


DEP should focus

on global warming

For at least two decades watershed groups, land conservancies, and municipalities collectively spent millions of dollars protecting Pennsylvania’s drinking water streams and rivers to keep them safe for swimming and fishing. During some of that time the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) was their ally.

Pennsylvania’s DEP’s website reads as follows: “The Department of Environmental Protection’s mission is to protect Pennsylvania’s air, land and water from pollution and to provide for the health and safety of its citizens through a cleaner environment. We will work as partners with individuals, organizations, governments and businesses to prevent pollution and restore our natural resources.”

Wow, that’s a far stretch from what DEP is doing today under the direction of Secretary Michael Kranser. Take for instance the wild, rampant, and mostly unregulated Marcellus Shale gas rush that is fouling our air, polluting entire watersheds, farmlands, and destroying our state forests and parks to benefit a select few, many of whom don’t even live in Pennsylvania. Also, consider the gas pipelines that are gouging through pristine streams and private property throughout the state in flagrant violation of the protections that DEP’s own mission is charged to protect. On top of that, Corbett is proposing establishing highly polluting gas cracking plants around the state.

What’s more critical than the smell of gas money or environmental degradation is the blatant blindness to the most life threatening issue that we know Secretary Krancer and Governor Corbett know about. But because it is so highly politicized, especially within neoconservative circles, they don’t want to talk about it - global warming.

Scientists observe 90 million tons of CO2 being pumped into the atmosphere every 24 hours from burning coal, oil and natural gas. Yes, burning natural gas contributes to global warming.

After a recent Senate budget hearing Secretary Krancer said, “Scientists have concluded that the world is getting warming. They’ve also concluded that human activity contributes to greenhouse gas and carbon emissions to the atmosphere. I agree with that.” He later injected the neoconservative mantra, “There is no uniformity within the scientific community on how much warming is occurring, and there is no agreement about how much is attributable to the human part of it and how much is attributable to other factors.”

That’s just not true and he knows it! As previously stated, 90 million tons of CO2 are pumped into the atmosphere every 24 hours from burning fossil fuels. Also, it’s a lie that scientist disagree. That crap comes from oil financed conservative think tanks like the Heartland Institute. There is not one peer-reviewed study by a qualified climatologist that disputes the overwhelming science about climate change that is backed by over 2,500 climatologists around the world.

They observed CO2 levels, in just the last 120 years jump 112 parts per million from an 800,000 year average of 280 parts per million to today’s 393 parts per million. In 2012, we witnessed a 75 percent Arctic polar ice sheet melt. We witnessed extreme storms all over the planet. Global warming draws more moisture into the atmosphere so when storms happen most of that moisture comes down as extreme storm events. If regional weather is cold, it comes down as snow; if the weather is warm it comes down as rain. Extreme is the operable; droughts and wildfires in some areas; floods in others. Tornadoes are more frequent and larger; hurricanes like Katrina and Sandy are coming as super storms.

If you have children and grandchildren, for their sake, your most pressing concern should be global warming. When climate change really kicks in the economy will be a moot point, so will many other frivolities on which we focus. As “custodian to our states waterways, air quality, and the health and safety of our citizens through a cleaner environment,” Secretary Krancer should be doing his utmost best to keep coal, oil, and gas in the ground. The survival of future generations is dependent upon it. If Secretary Krancer can’t uphold DEP’s mission statement he should step down.

Richard Whiteford


National debt

is paid by individuals

I have been reading about the monumental debt the United States currently is faced with; the approximation is equivalent is that each American citizen would need to fork out tens of thousands of dollars to help balance the budget.Thank you,

Jamie P. Lawrence

Assist. Dir. Sp. Education

Abington Heights School District

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