Last updated: February 19. 2013 11:10PM - 181 Views

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‘Assault rifles' needless for the general public

As a former U.S. Army small arms specialist I would like to dispel the myth that an assault rifle is the same as any other rifle for hunting or shooting.

Up to the end of World War II, most armies used rifles not much different from the normal hunting type. There was no really clear distinction. They were bolt action and not semi automatic. The US M-1 was the exception being the first semi-auto used by an army in World War II but it still only held eight bullets .

Then each nation developed their own version of what we call an assault rifle - a rifle that could fire semi or full auto using a lighter bullet than a hunting rifle, and would have a detachable magazine holding 20 or 30 bullets at a time and could be reloaded in seconds.

The idea was to have a lighter rifle that could cover a shorter range with an intense volume of firepower while enabling the average soldier to carry enough ammo. These assault rifles do not have the range or true hitting power for hunting large animals, nor are they as good as many other rifles for target shooting. With all the other fine choices available to the hunter or target shooter I see no reason for having such a weapon, and I would have no problem as a target shooter and gun owner with a total ban on the public ownership of such weapons.

Instead of gun ban keep an eye on the unhinged

When are we going to stop blaming guns, which are simply potentially deadly tools, and start blaming the wackos who wield the tools? Instead of registering guns, why do we not register wackos?

Nine times out of 10 these mass killings are perpetrated by schizophrenics off their meds. Sometimes their mental illness is not so easily diagnosed – they are just plain crazy. Guns don't kill people – people kill people. Or more specifically – crazy people kill people.

Liberals don't want to target crazy people because they don't want to stigmatize them or make them feel bad about themselves. They'd prefer to ban guns and thus render 300 million Americans defenseless. Now, I ask you, who is crazier – the diseased shooters or the liberal fascists who want us all to cower under desks or tables every time we hear a firecracker, backfire, or balloon-burst, while mumbling to ourselves: Dear God, I wish I had a gun right now.

Is that what liberals want or are they just off their meds?

Expensive gifts are no substitute for parenting

The holidays indeed are one of the most wonderful times of the year. But is the holiday marketing damaging parenting in our society?

Understandably, parents want to make their children as happy as possible, but I can't help but notice some things I have been hearing. No longer are kids asking for a Barbie doll and a jump rope, or a toy truck and toys for the sandbox. Now we hear, ‘I want a pair of Uggs and a Samsung Galaxy Tablet,' or ‘I want an iPad and an iPhone.'

Not only are children asking for these things, but parents are granting them their every wish. How can people afford to buy these outrageous gifts for children as young as even preschool age? What about our economy? Aren't we under an economical crisis?

Is the overwhelming holiday marketing just a new age and a new generation, or is it actually bad parenting? Is poor parenting promoting it further? Have the children become the dominant presence in our everyday household? Are we taking away actual playtime from our children and replacing it with electronics?

These are truly things to consider this holiday season. We should be able create beautiful memories, and give away wonderful gifts without spending more than we are able to afford.

Blame entertainment for erosion of solid values

Yes---guns did the killing--but let's address the persons pulling the triggers. What behavior/entertainment have they been exposed to and engaged in?

Just 4 days ago I had to change the TV channel because of an ad for a new film.

I was sickened at the trailer that I briefly saw. People being shot at close range, blood streaming from their anguished faces, the bodies flipping in the air.

The movie industry--Hollywood--has been glorifying this type of entertainment in recent years and perhaps now we are seeing the fruits of their graphic disrespect for life. Morality is not a word in our language anymore.

Then there have emerged the violent video games that so many of the young (and older) people engage themselves in for hours.

Let's take a deeper look--ease up a bit on the gun lobby--and direct our anger and disgust where it belongs to a degree, at the so-called entertainment industry that are depicting this behavior as natural and normal. Regulations are needed there more than anywhere else!

NRA: Assault weapons and society don't mix

The time has come. Americans must recognize assault weapons do not mix with a society apparently facing increased mental health issues.

I grew up with guns. I have hunted and frequented shooting ranges for target practice. I enjoy my guns and consider it a privilege and right to own them.

However, I do not own any assault type weapons.

The United State Army provided me more opportunity than I wanted to observe the power of an automatic weapon. They have one purpose — killing people — and they do it effectively.

There is no sporting use for any automatic weapons. They are no more accurate or powerful than your typical hunting rifle. All they bring to the equation is massive fire power. Firepower designed to kill as many people in as little time as possible.

Some argue they need this type weapon for self-defense, but there is nothing better than a 12 gauge shotgun with buckshot for that purpose. You simply can't miss.

It is time for the NRA to stop pressuring our legislature with big money and campaign contribution to buy continued support of our right to buy and own assault weapons. I refuse to support the NRA and you should do the same until they take a proactive position to ban assault weapons.

Contact your congressman and tell him or her to stop the nonsense. No amount of campaign money or NRA support is worth our children's lives. If they don't change their position, vote for someone who will!

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Richard P. Maida Larksville Mark Fritz Bloomsburg Alexandra Jones White Haven Peggy Bostwick Pocono Pines Edward Steltz Dallas

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