Rendezvous with destiny

To the Editor:

In this most recent gun debate let us not forget that what started the Revolutionary War was a gun grab by British Government. Known as the “Shot heard round the world,” in April of 1775, British soldiers were dispatched to Concord, Massachusetts, to confiscate the Colonists weapons. They came to arrest Sam Adams and John Hancock and to seize a cache of weapons known to be stored at Concord. The rest is history as they say, but the ageless battle to defend oneself against government control is neverending.

Today, as progressives fight to muzzle American citizens through political correctness, and now attempting to dismantle second amendment rights, a new bill, HR 5087, is a veiled attack on that right. An “Assault Weapons Ban,” but the writing in the bill goes much deeper to eventually include all guns.

A great man once said that, “evil is powerless if the good are unafraid.” But you and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We’ll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth – or, we’ll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.

We’re at war with the most dangerous enemy that has ever faced mankind in his climb from the swamp to the stars. And it’s been said if we lose this war, and in so doing, lose this great way of freedom of ours, history will report with the greatest astonishment, that those who had the most to lose did the least to prevent it from happening.

Well, I think it’s high time now that we ask ourselves do we even know the freedoms that were intended for us by our founding fathers? Every generation of Americans needs to know that freedom exists, not to do what you like, but having the right to do what you ought.

Write letters, call, speak up and stand out. What we need is more God and less government. Set yourself apart and be great Americans.

Suzanne Cruz


Let’s treat guns like cars

To the Editor:

In the online comments to a Feb. 23 letter on gun control, ThomasCollins1 wrote: “Blaming guns for murder is like blaming cars for auto accidents.” That is, in fact, a perfect summary of the problem and points a clear path to a solution.

By the 1960s, deaths by automobiles rose as high as 54,000 a year, then slowly declined to 37,000 today. The auto industry’s position could be summarized as “cars don’t kill people, people with cars kill people.” They vigorously opposed any and all requirements for safer cars. Nonetheless, auto accidents were recognized as a public health problem and studied by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), traffic engineers and others. Solutions based on scientific research led to seat belts, improvements in auto design, airbags, and safer roads. As a direct result, there’s been a dramatic decrease in car fatalities and injuries.

We need to apply that same approach to the 33,000 gun deaths per year.

Congress, though, has made it almost impossible to study gun violence and come up with solutions. In 1996, Congress passed the Dickey Amendment which prohibits the CDC from recommending any form of gun control based on their research. How do we understand a problem if the CDC is barred from the basic research that, like auto safety, lead to fewer deaths?

A recent non-governmental study has found that, again, multiple approaches show promise in reducing gun deaths: better background checks, keeping guns away from some of the mentally ill and required child safety locks. More research would lead to even better prevention strategies.

Even these simple and common sense steps are too much for the NRA and their paid-for Congressional reps like Tom McClintock ($33,000 from the NRA). What are the NRA and Congress afraid of?

George Durkee

Twain Harte

Give local artisans a chance

To the Editor:

The nice little town of Groveland is considered a “Gateway” community to Yosemite National Park. There are many skilled artisans and craftspeople living in the area and trying to make ends meet. You would think their creations might be of interest to some of the many gift shops in Yosemite with its four million annual visitors. You would be wrong.

Crafters and artists and my own personal experience point to the same conclusion: Most Yosemite gift shops will not even take the time to respond to submissions of most local art and craft work. Made in the USA or made locally means nothing? This is unfortunate, and a loss for vendors and visitors alike.

Store shelves stocked with foreign made T-shirts and tacky coffee mugs could, instead, be brimming with local creations of infinitely more variety and relevance. Gateway communities contribute to a memorable experience for Yosemite visitors, even more so if their arts and crafts are given a chance on the shelves of Yosemite stores and gift shops.

Dan Froseth