Assault weapon, ammo restrictions are needed

I'm a gun owner. My brother, who used to take me hunting, instilled a reverence about the dangers and responsibility regarding weapons.

My dad told me about stacks of dead people he witnessed in the Korean War to impress me with the hells of combat. Our warriors serve their country so we can be safe and not have to be armed to the teeth waiting for an invasion.

My revolver and shotgun are all I need to protect my home and to hunt. I don't need an assault rifle with a 30-round clip.

Twenty babies were slaughtered in Connecticut by a coward with weapons he shouldn't have gotten his hands on. This is a turning point for sensible restrictions on weaponry and a reasonable amount of firepower.

Some advocate no changes to gun laws and magazine clips with multiple rounds, citing the Second Amendment (which I heartily support) gives us the right to bear arms. Surely, the Founding Fathers never envisioned 21st century weaponry.

There must be a reasonable interpretation of the Second Amendment. For you slippery-slope types, if they ever tried to completely ban firearms, I'd be just as vociferous on your side.

Hal Imbrie

Concord

McCain is rolling in his ignorance

Sen. John McCain may be reveling in the success of his meanness, but he is also rolling in his ignorance.


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Susan Rice withdrew her name for nomination as secretary of state. The question is: Where is McCain getting so much misinformation and what is his motive for spreading it?

McCain told Charlie Rose that Rice is "not very bright." Perhaps he doesn't know Rice is a Stanford graduate, Rhodes scholar and has a distinguished career. This from the man who thought Sarah Palin was the most qualified person in the country to be vice president. Tina Fey was more qualified!

Too bad President Barack Obama is likely to pick Sen. John Kerry for secretary of state. I would like to have seen Scott Brown figure out how to get elected on his own -- without help from McCain and his buddies moving Kerry from his Senate seat.

Kit Miller

Walnut Creek

Gun control, mental illness must be focus

The terrible tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Conn., has left us all shocked and saddened. Through our grief, we are all searching for answers.

As expected, the national debate over gun control has been resurrected. While that debate needs to occur, the real issue that needs to be addressed is our handling of mental illness.

The common and recurring theme with all of these recent tragedies is mentally unstable people with guns. Unfortunately, our system seems to say, "We can't do anything with these people until they commit a crime." That's not very proactive.

Dealing with mental illness is a complex issue. So is gun control. But, until we adequately address these issues together, these terrible tragedies will continue to occur.

John Hill

Danville

We can work together to stop the violence

On Friday, a few hours after learning about the senseless shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School, I was prompted to take a long walk in my small town of Piedmont. The walk provided much-needed silence and space to reflect on the horrific tragedy that has touched so many.

On my way home, I walked past our town's relatively new and lovely Frank C. Havens Elementary School. Through an open window in the school's auditorium I could hear the enchanting voices of children practicing a song for an upcoming winter concert.

I paused and listened, as the singing voices made me smile and feel immense hope that even in the face of random acts of unthinkable violence perpetrated against the most vulnerable in our communities, our children, to be human is to love deeply and passionately.

We have the power to bind together and collectively upend the interests of the few who gain so much in making weapons that eviscerate the innocent: http://www.brady campaign.org.

Denise Bostrom

Piedmont