Gun violence: A response
Gun violence has taken countless lives, especially of young African-American men. This has to stop. All the talk during this election cycle about the Second Amendment has drawn debate from those on both sides of the gun issue.
Omar Beasley in his July 24 op-ed stated, “I see no reason that civilians need to own assault rifles.” I agree. However, they have slipped into our communities. All of our communities. Banning them would only embolden the criminal element who have no respect for the law. Liberal pundits see the NRA as madmen ready to “pop a cap” at everyone, whereas in reality they are just upholding their Second Amendment rights
Our educational system has done little to get our youth to truly understand why the Second Amendment was placed in our Bill of Rights. Kudos to our great educators that have. Without guns, the Redcoats would have had easy authority over the colonists. The patriots understood that tyranny must be attacked with force and liberty must be defended.
After the Civil War and Reconstruction gun laws came about to limit the economic and political power of blacks, primarily in South, many of which were in the Party of Lincoln as they faced intimidation from whites. Many blacks were turned away before they got to the polls from marauding whites and the KKK. And Hitler during his era raped the Jewish ghettos by also taking their guns when his forces came in.
Gun violence has been a part of America history from its inception. From the founding to the Civil War to the American advancement out West guns have been use to protect and to intimidate. The battles in the America west similarly to gang battles in some of our urban areas were over one thing: TURF. Instead of coming together and reconciling differences neighborhood wars raged and life lost too soon reigned.
How can we end gun violence? I do not have all the answers but I do have a few suggestions that can be achieved.
1. All crimes with a gun have mandatory sentences with no parole.
2. Eliminate the dropout age in public schools. Give students more incentives to stay in school and offer programs that are not just college-prep but also vocational. Vocation education will allow more job growth in America instead of using cheap labor overseas. Give incentives to American corporations that build in America versus overseas.
3. Lengthen the time for gun permits to be processed to allow for more time to access background.
4. Hold parents more accountable for the delinquency brought forth by their children.
5. Improve K-12 education while removing ill-performing teachers and administrators.
Nothing is perfect and gun violence will not end over night. Or can it?
Editor’s note: The length limit was waived to allow a fuller response to the column.
3 strikes, and ...
With baseball season upon us, consider the Legislature and governor in that context.
Strike one: loss of jobs, revenue and “energy independence” due to cancellation of all drilling for shale gas in the Triassic Basin due to complex geology, small amounts of recoverable gas, lack of infrastructure, low return on the dollar due to the shale gas glue, and no real understanding of the impact of these items by the Raleigh group.
Strike two: loss of jobs and revenue due to cancellation of off-shore drilling for hydrocarbons due to U.S. Department of Interior concerns about the ocean and shore environments and need for military projects, and no real understanding by the Raleigh group of environmental and tourism concerns by N.C. coastal governments and residents.
Strike three: loss of jobs and revenue due to HB2, and again no real understanding by the Raleigh group of the consequences of “rush and thoughtless” legislation.
So, three strikes, and they are out (say the N.C. voter/umpires).
Daniel A. Textoris
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