Armed campus not the answer

Dear Editor:

We as educators and board members feel that schools are doing the very best that they can to ensure the safety of the students in their care.

Arming school staff or hiring police still won't prevent someone with a mental illness from creating violence. During the Columbine shootings armed guards were on campus and a policeman nearby, but neither could prevent the massacre. The shooters on the hill were at another shooting at a middle school.

Campuses should continuously practice and review their emergency plans no matter what the cause. Aside from the home, we feel that children are safer in school than anywhere because of dedicated and caring staff.

Richard Asadoorian and Barbara J. Cowan

Antioch

Jesus wouldn't carry a gun

Dear Editor:

I'm thinking of buying a gun. Since owning a gun has become increasingly popular in the U.S., maybe it's time to get with the program. Coming from a family of hunters, I recall the childhood satisfaction of shooting at a bunch of tin cans.

What impact would owning and/or carrying a firearm have? Would I start imagining how I might use it or need to use it, inventing possible dangerous scenarios? Would packing make me experience the world as safer or less safe?

The main reluctance to arming myself in this way comes from following Jesus Christ. In any of my thoughts of what Jesus would do or call me as a citizen to do, owning a gun whose purpose is to kill just doesn't come up. Following Jesus includes being a peacemaker myself, so I guess the choice must be to pass. Then again, maybe I'll just put off the decision until we get through this season of welcoming the Prince of Peace. Happy New Year.

Rev. Alexis Easton

Brentwood

Amendment perfectly clear

Dear Editor:

I have noticed that a plethora of letter writers are constantly quoting the Second Amendment. However, I have also noticed that they constantly quote only the first part and then wax eloquent as to what the founding fathers actually meant.

So I thought that I would quote the entire amendment in its entirety. It may prove helpful: "A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the individual to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

The interpretation is not difficult to discern, and that is not only for the purpose of a militia, but as a means of protecting oneself and his family and possessions. If the intention was only for the purpose of a militia, the founding fathers would not have put the second section in place. This document was fully thought out, it is not a knee jerk reactionary document.

Paul H. Radliff

Brentwood

Council choice: It is what it is

Dear Editor:

You will be damned if you do, damned if you don't. That's what you have to look forward to when appointed to fill a seat on a city council -- or any other elected position. You will be referred to as the person who didn't run for office as others did but was appointed to the position, making your opinions and contributions appear less than they might in reality be.

Some will applaud your votes while others will condemn them. That's why it's imperative to take the time to explain the rational for voting the way you do. Ask questions and don't be hesitant to say if you don't understand or need more clarification. Your constituents may not like the outcome, but they will appreciate the insight you've given them as to how you arrived at your decision.

I remember years ago a woman was running for public office and a man often quoted in the paper was asked what he thought of her candidacy. His comment was short and to the point, "She's a very nice lady." It was the kiss of death for her run for office. It was his way of saying, "She doesn't have the balls to be a politician." It was a wake-up call for me. It taught me how the game of politics can take something as simple as a word or label and give it a bad meaning.

We have two new council members now on the Antioch City Council. Their supporters know them well, the general public not so much. In all fairness, we need to give them an opportunity to get acclimated to their new job. I'm sure they will make mistakes, say things they shouldn't say, tick off numerous people, and have regrets along the way. That's what you do when you're just learning the ropes.

Now is the time for the community to wish the council well, to educate ourselves on the issues coming before them so we understand all sides of an issue, to contact them directly and give our opinion and insight, and to step up to the plate and actively get involved in all aspects of community life.

Barbara Herendeen

Antioch

Letters policy

Let your East County neighbors know what you think about issues of the day by writing a letter to the editor.

Send letters to Editor, The News, 1700 Cavallo Road, Antioch, CA 94509, or email them to bnews@bayareanewsgroup.com or fax them to Judith Prieve at 925-706-2305.

Letters should be signed. Both letters and email should include the daytime phone number and address of the writer. The information will not be printed but rather used for verification purposes.

We reserve the right to edit or not publish letters deemed potentially libelous, that are ads for local businesses or are otherwise unsuitable for a family newspaper.

Also, we are looking for guest commentaries, especially on local issues. Please send your guest commentaries to jprieve@bayareanewsgroup.com or bnews@bayareanewsgroup.com. If you have any questions, call 925-779-7178.