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January 13, 2013
Salem News

Feels story inaccurate, misleading

To the editor:

Your article, "Prelim hearings reset in firearms cases," from Jan. 9 contains multiple inaccuracies and/or misleading statements. I cannot believe that the judiciary is not up to speed on current Ohio law as it pertains to firearms, but the article would lead you to believe that this is the case (no pun).

The article states, "Frost (Judge Mark Frost) questioned whether or not signs are still provided and posted at the door of bars and nightclubs informing the public about the law against carrying guns inside." Judge Frost should know that it is no longer illegal for a Concealed Handgun License holder to have in their possession a gun in an establishment that serves alcohol. The Restaurant and Car Carry Rules Fix, as the law has become known, changed the prohibition of guns in bars and restaurants, was signed by Governor Kasich last June, and became the law of the state on Sept. 30, 2011. The law states that any person who is carrying a valid license or temporary emergency license to carry a concealed handgun is permitted to possess a firearm in any room in which any person is consuming beer or intoxicating liquor in a premises for which a D permit has been issued as long as the person is not consuming beer or intoxicating liquor or under the influence of alcohol or a drug of abuse.

Also, the article stated "The weapon's charge is a fifth-degree felony stemming from Wilson allegedly having loaded handgun in the center console of his vehicle along with his concealed carry permit." If Mr. Wilson was in possession of his Concealed Handgun License, as the aforementioned sentence alludes, then it is perfectly lawful for him to have a loaded handgun in the console of his car. There are responsibilities attached to that right, if Mr. Wilson failed to execute, could be reason for a citation. But the mere fact that there was a gun in the console is not a violation of the law in this case. If Mr. Wilson was under the influence or failed to notify the officer that he had a loaded handgun he would be violating current laws. However, these infractions are misdemeanors.

The tone of this article is highly prejudicial. Most people have never read the Ohio Revised Code. They depend on sources such as your paper to help them negotiate the ever more complicated journey through our legal system. In most instances, this is the only information they consume to help them become better citizens and voters. When a story that is at best misleading or perhaps meant to promote an anti-gun agenda appears on your pages, it is a disservice to the entire community.



Touching on the Second Amendment

To the editor:

After this last terrible shooting in the school in Newtown, Conn., we can expect some kind of action from the President in regards to gun control, we can also expect reaction from the NRA.

The second amendment "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." I as a citizen do whole heartedly agree with the founders and will fight to keep the amendment in place.

In the 18th century when this amendment was written the only arms known were the sword, the muzzle loader rifle and pistol. Both of these arms were single shot, they were heavy, awkward and took several seconds to reload. I don't believe even Ben. Franklin who I believe possessed the greatest foresight of the time could have foreseen how far advanced those muzzle loaders would become. We might visualize today a gunman walking into a crowded area armed with a muzzle loader rifle and pistol. How many shots could he get off before he was taken down?

Today a 22-caliber revolver is a deadly weapon. Would this weapon satisfy the founders at that time? I believe it would, because it would be a hundred times more efficient than what was then available.

The founding fathers would leave the type of weapons to the discretion of future generations. This brings us to the touchy situation facing us today. If we remove weapons from the public that are not needed and have been responsible for so many deaths are we ignoring the second amendment? I think not, because we haven't in any way removed the teeth from the amendment.

However, we should be careful that certain elements from the far left who are working to change the constitution into a living document do not look upon any restriction of weapons as a green light allowing them to attack other segments of the document.

The question before us today. Do we need high velocity full and semi automatic rifles to protect our families and homes?



Reaction to the preceding letter...

To the editor:

While I often agree with Leon White's editorials, I strongly disagree with him in "Touching on the Second." His premise that the Second Amendment was written when guns were less lethal is obviously true. Our forefathers could not have anticipated the advancements made in guns since that time. But when we consider the main reason for the Second Amendment, it is obvious they would not have wanted to limit our ability to defend ourselves against threats, "both foreign and domestic." They knew government's propensity for tyranny against its own citizens.

The Second Amendment clearly states, "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Notice this does not say, "Except when simple minded government officials and left wing fanatics decide limitations should apply."

I do not own a semi-automatic military style weapon. However, I know of many people who do, and I am happy for this. Most are ex-military or law enforcement. Others are good upstanding responsible citizens. I trust these people will have my back and yours if things get stupid.

The Newtown school shooting was a travesty, no doubt. From what I read, every instance of mass killings over the past 20 or 30 years has been by a person on mind altering prescription psychiatric drugs. If we really want to prevent future attacks, we should start by looking closely at this.





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