Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013: Guns, environmentalism and the Constitution

Posted Jan. 16, 2013, at 10:43 a.m.

Semiautomatics have a place

The AR-15 is getting a bad reputation, and I want to point out it can be a useful tool. I live in rural Maine with four big dogs, and my vet bill for porcupine-quill removal passed $2,600. At that point, I bought an AR-15, and the problem is under control.

I also raise ducks and geese and need protection from foxes and weasels. I have shot raccoons stealing food from the automatic feed hopper. These varmints can move quickly, and weasels are small. A bolt-action rifle is too slow for the job, so semi-automatics are the answer.

A retired policeman I know mentioned he took his pistol home, but if there was evidence a shot had been fired he would have lost his job.

Frequently a shooter uses a weapon taken from a lawful owner. How about a law that would make the gun owner responsible for damage caused by their weapon?

You can be sure trigger locks and gun safes would become much in demand.

Jerry Metz, M.D.

South Addison

True environmentalists

The BDN blog, “Out There,” featured an article on Jan. 9 about local trapper Bob Martin. It captured perfectly the essence of Maine hunters and trappers. Without them, there would be no way to manage Maine’s precious natural resources.

In particular, beavers would completely destroy the areas around streams and bogs. Maine’s suburban deer would devastate hedges, gardens and bird feeders, passing along even more Lyme disease.

Luckily, there are more people in Maine that know the outdoors and all of mother nature’s offerings than in many states, and that is why I choose to live here.

People who understand the delicate balance of nature and can work with an unforgiving taskmaster such as Mother Nature will be the ones to protect Maine’s special places and are the true environmentalists.

How wonderful that Martin’s grandsons are learning the value of being close to nature. In the long run, it will make them healthier, physically and emotionally, than playing video games.

Paula Moore

Orono

Stop blaming guns

The problem with gun violence is not the guns. The problem is that this generation lacks the knowledge of problem solving. They only know to kill.

How did they learn this? In my generation we learned how to solve problems from watching “Ozzie and Harriet,” “Donna Reed” and “Father Knows Best.”

It’s different today with the TV shows, movies and violent video games. Also, we are surrounded by the killing of war.

Is it no wonder that we have learned that killing solves our problems?

Jackie Castaldo

Ludlow

Constitutional rights, wrongs

Prior to our illegal invasion of Iraq, the public was lied to and managed into a war that we still are involved with 10 years after the fact.

In that time frame, the media reported the terrorists were present. Americans were to be aware of nuclear or biological weapons, the anthrax scare and mushroom clouds over New York.

We were subjected to color-coded alert systems, intrusive airport scanners and electronic monitoring.

The Homeland Security’s intelligence-sharing program that can completely strip away your rights was initiated. They can now hold you without charges, not allowing for any legal representation for an indefinite period of time.

This time the conflict is not in some faraway place from which only the big corporations can profit. This time the conflict will not require huge expenditures of men and material. It will however, require everything we hold dear.

At stake are our individual rights under the Constitution.

I reference the possibility of taking the guns from law-abiding citizens, and I respectfully submit that the armed citizen is the main reason we have our democracy today.

I further submit that our two ongoing wars, the weapons of war and the killing and injuring of civilian populations around the world are undesirable.

I have yet to hear anyone in Washington voice elevated concerns about the high numbers of those children injured on our nation’s highways to the same degree prompted by the anti-gun crowd.

I request that you resist any and all efforts to strip our constitutional rights.

James Landry

Frankfort

Bring back market figures

I am a regular reader of the BDN and am writing to complain that the closing market figures on the business page have been eliminated.

I, along with other subscribers, would like to read more about finance and business. I feel the readers would like to see more in print than just stories about bath salts and pharmacy robberies.

I don’t enjoy buying USA Today to get my business information.

Terry Duran

Hermon

http://bangordailynews.com/2013/01/16/opinion/thursday-jan-17-2013-guns-environmentalism-and-the-constitution/ printed on July 22, 2014