Editor, Times-Union:
Way to go, Gary! You just had to bring up the controversial issue of guns last Saturday, didn’t you?
But, since you did, there is an important document that every citizen in this great country of ours should read. It is currently 111 pages of gun information with documented references. Whether you love guns or hate guns, this is the read for you.
Unfortunately, much of the news we read these days is biased and/or outright one sided. What most people want is simply the facts. The opinions and editorializing should be corralled in the editorial and opinion sections.
The free document I am urging everyone to read and pass on to everyone they know is on the Internet at www.GunFacts.info Guy Smith has assembled 111 pages of myths and facts regarding guns and it is well documented. Mr. Smith writes in the introduction, “Your corrections, comments, additions and suggestions are welcomed and encouraged.”
Here’s one example from page 17 (I abbreviated portions): “Myth: Accidental gun fatalities are a serious problem. Facts: Firearm misuse causes only a small number of accidental deaths in the U.S. For example, compared to being accidentally killed by a firearm, you are: five times more likely to burn to death or drown, 17 times more likely to be poisoned or fall to your death and 68 times more likely to die in an auto accident.” Those stats came from “WISQARS Injury Mortality Report, Center for Disease Control, 2007.”
I empathize with those who have lost loved ones to gun violence or misuse. Sandy Hook - horrible tragedy! But blaming guns for these deaths is like blaming the automobile for the 35,000 to 40,000 auto deaths every year. It’s not the gun and it’s not the automobile. It’s the human factor.
Here’s another example, page 37: “Myth: Private ownership of guns is not effective in preventing crime. Fact: Every year, people in the United State use guns to defend themselves against criminals an estimated 2,500,000 times – more than 6,500 people a day, or once every 13 seconds” (as cited in “Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology,” Kleck and Gerts, fall 1995).
To those readers who don't know or don't want to know, we should consider this, every nation on this earth that has disarmed its citizenry has watched their crime rates for most types of crimes increase. Check out www.GunFacts.info
Why? Because criminals have nothing to fear! If you want to defend your family members, friends or yourself with a baseball bat or kitchen knife while your attacker(s) brandishes a gun(s), good luck. Licensed, fingerprinted, concealed carry gun owners in Indiana and every other state obey the laws. Criminals don’t. Take away guns from American households and the only ones who will have them will be the criminals and law enforcement. I have the highest regard for all of our law enforcement officers who risk their lives everyday for you and me. But remember this, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.”
Enjoy and employ your right to bear arms while we are still free. Speaking of free, maybe we can get a rant going on “gun-free zones.” Wow, now there’s a “safety” oxymoron. Let’s see, who has guns in “gun-free zones”? Oh, yeah, criminals and unstable folks with the intent to do harm.
Way to go, Gary! You started it!
Stan Hepler
Warsaw, via e-mail