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Don’t sacrifice civil rights to ‘do something’

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I would like to respond to Crystal Stango’s March 22 letter, “Whittlesey’s gun control column ‘inane filler.’ ”
Stango was taking Whittlesey to task for his column, “Gun-ban effort infringes on our right to bear arms.” I would like to offer the following observations:
1. The statement that “nobody is asking for a gun ban” is incorrect. Many, having including some in state and federal government are asking for that.
Having lived in New York and New Jersey, I am well aware of the efforts of those states to severely restrict, if not outright ban, private ownership of firearms.
2. As to a country confiscating all firearms, I believe Germany did so prior to World War II, and I know Great Britain did so following World War II.
It is not ridiculous to consider the possibility in our own country.
3. There is a background check for firearms purchase in effect in South Carolina, as is the case in the majority of states.
As I understand it, the check is made through an FBI database concerning convicted felons, and as such is limited, in keeping with a careful consideration of our civil rights.
To add an expensive federal department to duplicate the states’ efforts is, I believe, unnecessary.
4. Currently, firearms safety training is done by the states, most commonly through hunter safety training in conjunction with hunting permits.
Most states mandate training before issuing concealed carry permits to individuals. They also mandate training and qualification procedures for law enforcement personnel.
Every private range has stringent rules, and every user must demonstrate his competence. The NRA has an array of training programs available to organizations and schools. Why duplicate that which is already in place?
5. The conversation we should be having in light of recent events is about preventing mentally unstable individuals from obtaining firearms.
Neither the civil rights of the mentally unstable, nor the civil rights of gun owners should be sacrificed in a rush to “do something.”
6. Ms. Stango began her letter by denigrating Mr. Whittlesey and The Lancaster News.
I find her letter reactive, incorrect, discourteous and a hindrance to intelligent conversation about problems we face.
 
Paul Lloret
Lancaster