Union Democrat staff

Condolences to the Gruenther family

To the Editor:

Teaching at Summerville High School for 25 years was a very rewarding experience. I had the pleasure of interacting with many intelligent, personable young people. One of those was Lucas Gruenther. He was a joy to have in class, always respectful and appreciative of the knowledge he received at Summerville. We (the staff) were very proud of his earning acceptance at the Air Force Academy and seeking a career in our country's armed forces. His passing is a great loss to the community and our country. My condolences and prayers go out to his family.

Stephen Mosley

Grass Valley

I have no intention of giving up my gun

To The Editor:

Thank you for publishing Sheriff Mele's letter. I am also very concerned about how far the gun ban laws will go. I have a handgun that I purchased for personal protection 10-plus years ago and I have no intention of giving it up. It is nice to know that with Sheriff Mele in office, I won't have to worry about that happening. Thank you, Sheriff Mele, for standing up for the rights of the law abiding citizens of this county.

Beth Buttazoni


Mele sounds like an NRA rep

To the Editor:

I would like to comment on statements made recently by NRA representatives.

"Background checks will never work because criminals will not submit to them." - Wayne LaPierre, NRA.

Now the purpose of the background check is to stop criminals, etc. from buying guns. So if they do not go to the local fairgrounds to illegally buy a gun - then the background check worked!

Right now, the dealers and the criminals are having a field day.

Now there is Sheriff Mele. He wants to misinterpret the Constitution, to pick and choose which laws he will enforce and of write his own Presidential Executive Orders. Both these individuals show an absence of ability to think logically.

"...in my 25 years in law enforcement, I have not seen one gun law that kept a criminal from breaking the law." Sheriff Mele (this is such a bizarre statement)

A statement I found said that 155,000 people who applied for permits were denied - did that prevent 155,000 crimes? Sure, laws do not prevent crimes, and officers on the street do not stop them all, but still we have the need for boths laws and law enforcement.

It appears our Sheriff is not working for us, so what can we do to help ourselves?

How about if we take the awesome medical costs off our backs? 30,000 gun related deaths in 2005 cost us $30,000,000,000 (billion) plus another $3.7 billion in non-fatal wounds according to the latest report from the Center for Disease Control (CDC). We are paying for this.

I suggest a value added tax for every bullet produced and 10 percent premium on every gun manufactured. That will not cover the horrendous health care costs caused by these items, but it's a start.

Domenic Torchia


Don't let history repeat itself

To the Editor:

Thank you Sheriff Mele.

Your strong conviction in following our Constitution is praiseworthy, and I applaud you for it.

How many of our college kids have read or studied it?

Our Second Amendment gives us the privilege of owning guns, period!

We have a serious problem in our country where the state and federal governments have dismantled healthcare for our growing population with mental health problems. I watched it go down the tube when I worked in schools with special needs students for 18 years.

We also have a problem when our President and some in Congress who agree with the United Nations to make our world "gun free!" The UN will meet in March to finalize their radical "Small Arms Treaty!" According to Rand Paul, this will deny all people the right to own any guns.

When you look back in history, in Germany the Nazis had all guns registered and then they confiscated them! No wonder millions were killed, they could not defend themselves!

Is this history repeating itself?

Thank you for standing up for us.

Juanita Barron


Descending into an immoral abyss

To the Editor:

"From the initial imposition of the Patriot Act levied by the previous administration to the latest NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) the United States has gone from a country that, at least overtly, has conditioned its citizens that it acts in benevolent self interest not only with foreign peoples but with it's own citizens. (See: Theory of "American Exceptionalism")

It's citizens have been conditioned to believe that this government has the utmost respect for it's founding Constitution and the all protecting Bill of Rights which gives force to that which is declared in that Constitution.

Those two initial protective instruments are now superseded by hundreds, if not thousands of pages of "qualifying" phraseology subverting the very founding principles by which our government professes to rule and its citizenry broadly believe protect them.

Recognizing that since 2001 this government has "ruled" under the Patriot Act and its modifications, has kept us in a state of "emergency rule" since; has initiated and dragged many other countries to assist it in human "renditions", outright torture, brutal deaths, even declares any American citizen a "legitimate" target anywhere in the world that citizen may defy it's foreign (and domestic) policies, it is perfectly clear to me that we have become a nation not of laws, but one of a nation ruled by very powerful, arrogant men (and women).

We cannot let this discussion be reduced to just the "use" of drones in warfare, but what power are we relinquishing to one individual, the President, to use this instrument anywhere in the world on anyone who presents even a "future" threat to our "interests?"

What powers will the next president declare to be his own, no longer of the people's representatives all in the name of "national security"?

We continue to descend into an immoral abyss.

Bert Canepa