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Letters to the editor

Hurricane repair not duty of swamped government

Call me hard-hearted, I don’t care, but I don’t understand when we became a socialistic country. New York and New Jersey want $60 billion more to repair the damage from Hurricane Sandy, and people are all up in arms because Congress has not granted it yet.

Don’t those people have insurance? When you build a few feet from the ocean, or beneath the level of the ocean such as New Orleans, shouldn’t you expect to be flooded out now and then? Why should the rest of the country be expected to compensate for their stupidity?

This country is already in debt over $16 trillion and borrowing $4 billion a day. When is it all going to stop?

WILLIAM COOK Leo-Cedarville

In DC, progress vanishes with ‘business as usual’

I, for one, would like to have pushed a few officials off a cliff, from the White House through the halls of Congress. The fiasco of “negotiations” has certainly proven that Washington is no longer doing “business as usual” – that’s at least one promise kept! As bad as that was, it at least got some things done!

With all the talk, I don’t think I heard anything on obvious spending cuts: dealing with fraud, government waste, irrelevant projects and services and moving a lot into the private sector. That would have made a good start! That’s where we “everyday” folks start with our personal budgets. And on “transparency,” will we ever learn what hidden deals were done this time? Can we have another election? Please!


Media, government shift gun responsibility

It’s started again: A push to ban so-called assault weapons. Blame the object, not society. However, I am amazed at the absolute stupidity of the mass media pertaining to firearms.

“Clips” and “bullets” are used in place of the proper terms, magazines and cartridges. Why is this so important? Because it proves to me that the media and our elected officials in Washington know nothing and prefer to know nothing about firearms and the millions of us that legally own them.

The media and politicians also do not know, or do not care, why the Second Amendment was included in our Bill of Rights. James Madison, in the 46th letter as found in the Federalist papers, explains the reason for the Second Amendment. This information is easily found online on the Internet.

Times have most certainly changed since I hunted squirrels as a 14-year-old back in 1942. I was able to carry my .22 rifle openly on my back while riding my bicycle through Fort Wayne. I was never stopped or questioned. Since then, I note as a Korean War veteran approaching 85 years of age that the moral guidance existing back in 1942 is now in the process of being replaced. The government has grown larger, much larger, and believes that it has become the new moral guidance.

As proof of this, legislation is everywhere, enacting the “new” moral code against objects but not against the person. Personal responsibility is becoming obsolete, replaced by the government’s “we will take care of you” philosophy.


Forget guards in schools; restrict assault weapons

I am in total disbelief at what the leader of the NRA is proposing. Armed guards in schools? Where is the money going to come from? We have schools that are falling apart, and programs such as music, art and physical education that are being cut or reduced because of a lack of funds to our school systems, and you want armed guards posted at our schools?

Then I hear that some places are wanting to arm the teachers. I believe I heard in Utah that they are wanting to arm at least one teacher in each school. Really?

The NRA and others are absolutely right; guns aren’t the problem, it’s the people that have the guns. Well, then, make it as difficult as possible for these demented individuals to acquire guns. I really do not see the necessity for assault weapons for your everyday citizen walking the street. These should only be used by law enforcement and military personnel.

Why do so many people have such a fear that they need to run out and purchase these types of weapons? I’m not against your constitutional right to bear arms. I, however, am against the senseless tragedies that occurred this past year because a demented individual is allowed to purchase these assault weapons with the capability of maximum firing power.


Equating guns, violence distorts ‘gun culture’

Recently, there have been many references in the media to the “gun culture” in America. The “gun culture” being referenced by the media bears no resemblance to reality. From the days of the dime novels that sensationalized the events of the Old West, right up to today’s shoot-’em-up cop shows and video games, the media has never, ever, realistically portrayed guns.

Worse yet, the media has glorified violence and then gone on to equate guns with violence. Guns and violence are two separate issues. Anyone who believes that violence is an inherent part of the gun culture has never read an NRA magazine, been to a gun show or shooting range, or had a loved one be forced to use a gun to protect her life against a criminal attacker. The gun culture abhors criminal violence.

The actual gun culture in America can be roughly divided into four overlapping groups of people who use guns for various purposes: hunting, sport shooting, personal protection and collecting.

Hypocrites in the media glorify the misuse of guns and then use their own misrepresentations as evidence to impugn the character and motivations of millions of law-abiding gun owners. It is a classic con game, and I hope that the American people don’t fall for it.


Make battlefield gun ban part of massacre reaction

George W. Bush’s weapons of mass destruction have finally been located. Where, one might ask? At Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

On that fateful morning, a disturbed individual began his day by killing his mother. He then proceeded to a grade school, where he massacred 26 individuals then himself. No doubt he was emboldened by the weapons he used.

What may have prevented this incident? A better understanding and treatment of mental illness. A more sophisticated security system at the school. Exit-only doors in each classroom. More stringent laws that would not permit that type of weapon in private hands.

It is time that the citizens of this country encourage legislation that would eliminate the ability to procure those weapons that are meant to kill on the battlefield. The National Rifle Association has been dictating gun laws in this country for quite awhile, hiding under the guise of Second Amendment rights.

The NRA always wants to remind us that the weapons are meant for self-protection. May I remind you that on that fateful morning, the killer’s first victim was his mother, who had weapons in the home to protect herself. How did that work out?

His next victims were educators and innocent young children.


Plenty of opportunity to change an animal’s world

Gandhi said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Recent news of an alleged dog-fighting operation in Whitley County and hearings regarding proposed puppy mills in Noble County last week suggest that we have much work to do in northeast Indiana where animal welfare is concerned.

It is my hope that in 2013, we will ask ourselves what more we can do to improve the lives of animals in our community. Let’s commit to spaying and neutering our pets. Let’s give them safe, loving homes and good veterinary care. Let’s speak up on their behalf by ending animal cruelty and punishing those responsible. Let’s close down puppy mills and commit to supporting the work of area animal shelters and rescues by adopting homeless cats and dogs.

Saving the life of one animal may not change the world, but the world surely will change for that one animal. This year, please join us in this effort to make northeast Indiana a safe and caring community for all animals.

JESSICA HENRY Director Allen County SPCA

Donations brought help to disabled veterans

The Indiana Disabled American Veterans Chapter 40 of Allen County wishes to thank all who donated in support of our local veterans in 2012. We wish to thank you not only for the monetary donations, but the donations of recovery beds, power wheelchairs, coats, blankets, and other goods to help us support our local veterans who may have been struggling this holiday season.

Your donations helped the DAV distribute $5,438 to eight local veterans and $7,000 to four local veterans support organizations this holiday season. We are looking forward to helping more veterans in Allen and Whitley counties.

We encourage you to get more information about our local DAV chapter by watching a YouTube video ( posted by Dale Parrish, host of the Local Access Channel show called “American Veteran.” Our commander, Matt Plum, does an excellent job explaining our local DAV chapter.

Again, thank you and we hope you had a blessed holiday season and have a very happy New Year!

JASON E. SMITH Public relations chairman Indiana DAV Chapter 40

Postal clerks more eager to close than do their job

I experienced a situation at the post office recently that I feel is quite unacceptable. I am a member of the Fort Wayne Rotary Club. Our club adopted a company of military troops and made nearly 20 care packages to send overseas. They were packed, taped, addressed, and all the customs forms were completed.

I went to the Independence Drive USPS branch, which closed at 5:30 p.m. I arrived at 5:20 p.m. I was completely shocked, but they refused to help me because they were going to be “closing in a couple minutes.”

I said, “Hmm, I always thought when a business establishment was open until 5:30, they stayed until the last customer was served.”

They replied, “well, you have a lot of packages and you don’t have postage yet.” I said in reply, “but that’s why I came here – to get postage.” They didn’t have much to say in response.

I just said, “OK, I guess I’ll just have to come back” and calmly walked out.

I think this USPS branch needs a major lesson in customer service.