Letters to the editor: Dec. 27, 2012
Society evolving in a positive way
The Dec. 13 Dick Lyles and Amy Roost columns encapsulated the liberal/conservative co-dependant relationship perfectly.
Amy wisely reminds us that a fully rounded political spectrum requires both perspectives, and makes the case for liberals and conservatives working together for the benefit of all. Well said.
Meanwhile, Dick complains about the bilious rancor of current political discourse, and he does have a point. Partisan enmity is poisoning American politics. Lyles wisely doesn’t point fingers at any one political party for causing it — that would only make him look worse. Instead he claims that hatred is on the rise throughout American society, that it’s some kind of systemic social disease infecting our culture.
Well Dick, allow me to try and cheer you up. Your diagnosis is flawed. American society is actually evolving in a very positive direction, where hatred and oppression are no longer tolerated, where blind conformity and subservient obedience are no longer required. In the new American Century, we are building a new level of freedom. Instead of oppressive Thou Shalt Nots, we are guided by a simple Golden Rule: “An it harm none, do as thou wilt,” to use the archaic formulation.
Conservatives rant about “taking their country back” to the good old days, the 1950s, when lynching was legal and conformity was king. Not going to happen.
Conservatism does still have value. Lose the hate, the bigotry, the narrow-minded religious fanaticism, and conservatism can once more contribute to American politics in a positive way. But make it quick. We can’t afford to wait much longer.
Gerold Firl, Poway
Why gun bans are useless
It amazes me that Senator Feinstein is calling for a federal ban on so-called “assault weapons” in reaction to the Connecticut shootings, given that the state of Connecticut already had an “assault weapons” ban on its books for several years. The Sandy Hill massacre is a perfect example of why such bans are useless, and it is beyond me why Feinstein would waste her breath promoting more of the same failed policies.
We have seen the futility of strict gun laws over and over again around the world. Russia’s draconian gun laws failed to stop a disgruntled lawyer from gunning down six colleagues in Moscow last month with a shotgun. Likewise, Norway’s strict licensing and screening system did nothing to prevent Anders Breivik from killing 69 people on Utøya Island last year with a Mini-14 rifle.
This is not to say that shooting rampages cannot be prevented. The fact is that most of these shooters give up or commit suicide as soon as they are confronted by armed resistance. If schools were to take the same measures as banks, courthouses and corporate headquarters — controlled points of entry and an armed security guard — murderers like Adam Lanza would no longer have free reign to attack with impunity. Such measures would not be 100 percent effective, but they would certainly have a greater impact than any gun ban ever could.
James Daube , Rancho Bernardo
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