This is in response to the article “Reader Chooses to vote against NRA” appearing in the Oct. 26 Costal Point. Once again the “Gun Haters” mount their assault against the one premier institution in the country that promotes gun responsibility and safety. The author is inferring that the 5 million NRA members are not “life-loving Americans.” How totally preposterous! Then to make a baseless claim that 20 percent, or one million Americans, “may be good people” and the rest of the four million are radical is beyond absurd.
It is interesting that the title of the article includes the term “Chooses to Vote.” Now how do you think that particular right of “Chooses to Vote” came about? A large percentage of the NRA members are either current or honorably discharged military. These folks are responsible for giving you that right to choose! A simple “Thank You” would suffice instead of making the inference that they are not “life-loving Americans.”
I would like to correct the thought of classifying the AR-15 (M-16) and AK-47 as being manufactured for mass killings only as incorrect. The AR-15 is the most popular sporting rifle in the United States. The AK-47 is a much less popular rifle because of the difficulty in finding them. Both of these weapons are only sold legally in the US as semi-automatic weapons, and thus are not classified as an assault weapon. AR-15-style rifles are NOT “assault weapons” or “assault rifles.” An assault rifle is fully automatic — a machine gun. Automatic firearms have been severely restricted from civilian ownership since 1934. Police departments and the military use short fully-automatic weapons such as the HK MP5 and UZI 9mm as assault weapons.
As an NRA member I absolutely support background checks prior to purchasing any weapon. The problem remains after all of these incidents where the perpetrators of these horrific acts were well known to have mental problems; we still have nothing nationwide in place that will alert us to their sickness. Be it politics, patient privacy, or reluctance of family or friends to come forward, a solution must be found in sharing information that can prevent these acts.
Anything can be made into an instrument to kill if a sick mind has the inclination to do so. Who would have imagined that taking a kitchen pressure cooker and readily available ingredients could turn it into a bomb that can kill and maim hundreds of people? It is a sad time we live in when a deranged mind can climb into a motor vehicle and mow down and kill dozens of people. The point is we are focusing on the instrument of death and not the sick mind that has decided to perform these acts, and until we shift our focus to the person, this carnage will continue.
I believe the difference between our ideologies here is that the vast majority of NRA members will fight for your right to have, and express, your opinion, regardless of your point of view! This is America, and expressing our differences is a sacred right!
Honorably discharged Navy Corpsman
Retired 37 years Law Enforcement