102°F
weather icon Clear

Letters to the editor of the Pahrump Valley Times

We should be considering the potential for harm

Like other Americans, I am deeply troubled and struggling to get my mind around the horror that occurred in that Parkland, Florida high school. It is all but impossible to grasp how anger or a desire for revenge can reach a level that motivates the mass killing of innocent people.

Parents, grandparents, and every compassionate person is desperate for a way to finally end the madness that seems to have no end. There are those who believe what should be done is gun up! And be ready to shoot the bad guys, anytime, anywhere. And the gun lobby, which includes arms makers and the NRA, will oppose most legislation that could limit citizen access to firearms.

In the news, thoughtful speakers have made the point that turning our schools into fortresses is the wrong thing to do. I agree. As a retired prison inspector with the Florida Department of Corrections, I can say with certainty that a prison-like environment is not conducive to a wholesome learning experience.

Short of rescinding the Second Amendment, what reasonable steps can be taken to keep guns out of the hands of those who should never have them? It seems to me that at least part of the solution involves process.

For example: In the United States driving a motor vehicle is still viewed as a privilege, rather than a right. Surely, considering the potential for harm, buying a gun ought to be at least as involved as qualifying for a driver’s license.

As it relates to the lawful sale of firearms, a workable process might include the following:

• Complete an application that requires answers to pointed questions, such as: Why do you want to purchase a firearm? For hunting? Target competition? Self-defense? Other: Explain in detail.

• Have you ever taken medication for anxiety or depression?

• Have you ever been diagnosed with a psychotic disorder? While many would avoid the truth, some responses could be very enlightening.

• Applicants must meet certain requirements of age, citizenship and pass a thorough background investigation that reveals any involvement with law enforcement with law enforcement, criminal history and known mental health issues. This could generate a RED FLAG for local law enforcement, ATF and the FBI.

• There must be some exceptions on the type of firearms that may be purchased. Guns originally or specifically designed for the military should be unavailable for public sale.

• Buying firearms via the internet must cease. “Casual” or person-to-person transfers must be strictly regulated. Virtually all sales of guns should be from a licensed dealer, who must witness the purchaser’s signature on an application to be submitted for processing. This could take far more than three days.

Realistically, there is no final solution that can eliminate gun violence. Criminals and the mentally disturbed will continue to acquire firearms. But something more must be done to protect the general public, students and our children. I intend to send my thoughts on this matter to my representatives in Washington. I urge others to do the same.

Ralph Bazan

Questions we ought to be asking ourselves

Observe the progress of a child. When born, a child’s mind is completely ego and as a child grows, its ego gives way to curiosity and a child uses the word “why” to satisfy its desire to “know.”

Cultural instruments stifle the word “why” as a means to turn people into acceptors and followers trained to not ask questions. Information providers such as alphabet electronic news outlets and certain newspapers, movies, religions, labor unions and political parties, are all geared to create acceptors or followers.

We must collectively break the invisible chains holding our minds captive and begin asking “why.”

For example, why was over $9 million spent creating false information during the last election? Why is the Department of Defense unable to account for several trillion dollars of expenditures? Why was the Senior Executive Service created within the federal government apart from civil service regulations and who oversees this cadre of specialist? This new service was authorized to hire thousands of people without being subjected to background or security evaluations.

Why has the mainstream media (MSN) never reported on activities of Deep State bent on subverting our nation’s Constitution? Why was 20 percent of our nation’s uranium supply sold to Russia? Why has the CIA been allowed to import opium into this country? Why has human trafficking been allowed to flourish within our nation? Why have our nation’s justice department and law enforcement agencies become political pawns? Why have national congressional members of both political parties been selling our nation to the highest bidder? Why is our nation required to import steel and other materials to build national defense equipment?

These are only a few questions we voters must step up to and demand answers. Members of both political parties must put the future of our nation above party loyalty because we are being hoodwinked. Root out elected officials willing to destroy our Constitution. Don’t be acceptors, be informed voters and cast your votes for the nation, not your political party.

Dwight W. Hunter

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
TIM BURKE: Is COVID-19 Chinese plot to undermine our country?

We seem to be living in a state of constant chaos in 2020. Is it a plot by the Democrats to keep the country embroiled and divided through the election to unseat the president? Or is it a coincidental series of events?

DAN SCHINHOFEN: The bottom line

Can we get just one honest politician to stand up and say, “I think we may have overreacted to this whole COVID-19 thing”?

DEBRA J. SAUNDERS: Joe Biden meets the press

Former Vice President Joe Biden held his first news conference in 89 days, but the press missed a golden opportunity to ask him some real questions.

DEBRA J. SAUNDERS: Trump voters not dying to see Trump

The empty seats at President Donald Trump’s Tulsa, Oklahoma, rally show that his supporters aren’t willing to put themselves at risk to attend a rally during a pandemic.

DAN SCHINHOFEN: Facts, not fear

At the end of this piece, I will list my sources, which are mostly the CDC. From the beginning of this “crisis,” we have been told that we need to listen to the experts, and that is what I have been doing. The CDC recommends using masks and wiping down surfaces, but they do not have clinical data to back this up, and they even contradict their own message in some cases.