Letters to the Editor

8/7 Letters: Stop blaming mental illness, video games. I’m not buying it.

Not buying excuses

President Trump blamed mental illness and video games for the violence and mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton.

Mr. Trump, I have shocking news for you. Every country has mentality ill people, but not mass shootings.

Japanese play more video games, violent ones too, than we do. But they have no mass shootings.

Just maybe it is because, as some studies indicate, we have more guns than people in this country.

These tired old talking points don’t cut it.

If having more guns means more safety, then we should be the safest place on the planet. Instead, we lead the world in gun violence. I for one am not buying your excuses.

Jim Flynn, Knightdale

Don’t blame guns

When will the media, politicians looking for votes, and mourners figure out that the shooting violence all over America is the fault of deranged evil individuals who have not had a proper rearing.

They refuse to obey authority, and with limited life and work skills are looking to do something evil.

Hold parents accountable for these deranged individuals.

You are never going to stop the purchase of guns. Have you never heard of the black market or underground economy?

This tactic will not work for gun control.

People who bring candles and flowers to these shooting sites in memory of the deceased should donate that money to further better parenting or help pay for the medical needs of the mentally ill.

Mary Lou Smith, Raleigh

Weapons of war

I served four years in the U.S. Navy never having heard an AK-47.

Then a week ago, hotheads apparently brought their gun battle to my neighborhood. It became crystal clear hearing that cannon-like booming that these assault rifles are nothing less than weapons of war.

There is no justification for anyone outside of the military or law enforcement to possess assault weapons.

Can we get to the well-regulated part of our “well-regulated militia” now?

Mark Turner, Raleigh

Praying to the NRA

I would like to know the time commitment of N.C. senators when they experience their thoughts and prayers for victims of gun violence.

Does each victim get 5 minutes? Ten?

Do the senators continue to think and pray in coming years as the victims’ families suffer? Do they still pray for the Newtown and Parkland kids?

I believe their petitionary prayer is most often for the continuation of funding from the NRA, which thus far has spent $11.5 million to elect them.

Our senators are bought and sold by the gun lobby. A majority of Americans want common-sense gun reform. Let’s elect those who represent our beliefs, not the moneyed special interests of the NRA.

Dr. Mindy Oshrain, Durham

Cancer care bill

North Carolina lawmakers will soon vote on a bill that could be very dangerous for cancer patients and diminish access to lifesaving treatment and drugs.

The proposed legislation would expand the availability of Association Health Plans, which are exempt from many critical patient protections.

These protections are critical to ensure that those with pre-existing conditions have immediate and affordable access to the care they need.

As an oncologist who has been treating cancer patients for 37 years, I know all too well about the consequences of delayed diagnosis and treatment for blood cancer patients — often caused by health insurance issues.

Those delays can be fatal.

North Carolinians are counting on our lawmakers to do the right thing and stand up for patients who are already fighting for their lives.

Dr. Mark Yoffe, Raleigh

Anti-asylum bill

The Senate Judiciary Committee, of which Sen. Thom Tillis is a member, voted the Secure and Protect Act of 2019, out of committee last week, sending it to the full Senate for a vote.

Despite its name, this bill will create new barriers to asylum and codify into law the administration’s most harmful policies that punish asylum seekers at the U.S. border.

Even worse, it could have a significant negative impact on children, who would lose many of the legal protections they currently have, meant to protect them from prolonged detention and make sure they are treated like children rather than adults as they pursue their asylum claims in court.

Protecting children should be the primary focus of our elected officials, yet once again, we see legislation that targets children and turns its back on the most fundamental American values of family and safety.

I believe North Carolinians embrace family values and stand against inhumane treatment of children, and I urge our elected senators to do so as well.

Allison Mahaley, Hillsborough