Subscriber Login

Forgot Your Username?
Forgot Your Password?
Why are our senators afraid of the NRA? PDF Print E-mail

Letter to the Editor:

The National Rifle Association (NRA) and the gun lobby want us to live in fear. If they scare us badly enough into believing that any vote for gun control is a vote to take away our right to bear arms, then they believe we will be cowed into voting for their ideology.

The NRA, however, does not represent the will of the people. No matter how much money that group throws at our politicians, its scare tactics, ultimately, will not prevail. We, the people, do not need money to go to the polls and vote. We need only the strength of our convictions.

Many of our elected officials, on the other hand, recently gave in to the NRA’s fear tactics. On Wednesday, April 17, 2013, these U.S. senators voted against background checks for online and gun-show sales and checks to screen out potential gun buyers with mental illness. Why are the people whom we have elected to represent us so afraid? The NRA sent me a 2012 Wisconsin Candidate Questionnaire last year. I refused to return it because of the “yes-no” format, which did not allow for honest and thoughtful answers. But I did send the NRA a letter because of a statement highlighted in bold in the cover letter that accompanied the questionnaire.

The NRA wrote: “If you choose not to return a questionnaire, you may be assigned a ‘?’ rating, which can be interpreted by our membership as indifference, if not outright hostility, toward Second Amendment-related issues.”

As a hunter and gun owner, I was compelled to respond to the NRA’s outrageous assertion that if I dared not to return its candidate questionnaire I would be branded as openly hostile to the Second Amendment.

Who does the NRA think it is? The voice of the people? Advocates for our Second Amendment rights? This is our country, not the NRA’s. We, the people, value our freedom just as we value our right to be safe from fear. Fear comes in many forms — from the heavily-armed individual who kills our children while they attend school to the groups that spread false concerns in order to promote their agendas.

Take a look at the politicians who receive funding from the NRA. Then, on election day, when you have the chance to stand up to the false fears under which the NRA wants us to live, go vote.

Susan Sommer


Tuesday, April 23, 2013 2:09 PM


+5 #35 Denny Erardi 2013-05-20 17:23
Thank you, Tim.
0 #34 2013-05-20 17:02
One more thing...

This is what I originally stated:

"He suffers from PTSD and by all intents and purposes, is considered mentally unstable, and his diagnosis labels him in the mentally challenged area."

I had assumed that you would come to the fact that this was a "medical diagnosis" simply because he has PTSD.

Your statement of:

"Agree completely with John - no one suffering from PTSD should have access to a gun."

Again, showing the impossible outcome of your comments.

Okay... done now.
-5 #33 2013-05-20 16:58

It is the point... You judged him without knowing the whole truth. Just like I did about your view and others to see how you would feel when the tables were turned. You made a judgement on someone, and not just 'someone' but millions of people, even AFTER I told you that he would never harm a soul.

You talked about a clean bill of health, yet that is impossible... that was the point!

Apparently you cannot "cure" a sexual predator. Even if a psychiatrist had given that scum a clean bill of health. You asked for a "clean bill of health" from a qualified person. As stated before, impossible!


I see that you are not going to own up to it, so I will end the debate.
+5 #32 Denny Erardi 2013-05-17 21:31
You don't know me, Tim, and would do well to stop personalizing the debate. I've not made any pejorative assumptions about you - would be nice, though not expected, for you to stop doing it.

I was not the one who said your friend suffered from PTSD - you did. If you want people to answer your questions with full benefit of all pertinent, objective information, then provide it. Post a physician's report with the medical citation of the disease from which he suffers. Tell us how long he served, what his symptoms are, what episodes he's had, if any. Post his military records. If you're not willing to do that, than deal with the fact that I made reasonable assumptions and in good faith, assumed that you weren't playing some silly mind game.

And quit ascribing characteristics to me about which you know nothing -- you have no idea whatsoever how I feel about autism or what I know. I also think it's a poor comparison to make between your friend's PTSD and a rapist.
-9 #31 2013-05-17 15:45

In terms of being a psychologist or a psychiatrist, no I am not. However, I do have experience dealing with mental disorders, as my oldest son falls within the “Autism Spectrum”. I wonder what your stereotypical view of him is? I am guessing you are thinking of the movie “Rain Man” or something of that sort, someone who is very low functioning, when in fact he is not.

Instead, he is a relatively high functioning child with Autism. Would I trust him with a firearm? No as he does not fully understand consequences to his actions like many children don’t. Would I trust another fellow I know with a firearm that falls within the Autism spectrum? Yep! He understands consequences. Here are two individuals who both fall within the same spectrum, and yet one is okay and the other is not.
-9 #30 2013-05-17 15:44

As for the rapist question, you referred to someone having "a clean bill of health". Would you trust a qualified psychiatrist who says that a convicted rapist is perfectly fine to live within the general public, or next door to you for that matter? After all, he was given "a clean bill of health."

Therein lies the issue… I am guessing that since you want to err on the side of caution, you don’t trust anyone. Therefore, your comment regarding a “clean bill of health” is irrelevant and impossible. It is also impossible since an affliction will follow you for the rest of your life through your medical records.

By that same logic, no one should have the ability to drive automobiles as they can crash and kill people. Airplanes should be outlawed as they crash and kill people. After all, you are erring on the side of caution.
-9 #29 2013-05-17 15:44

You keep referring to the fact that I think you are a veteran hating person. All I did, was simply label you as being in that same group. I never said you were, I just placed the "label" on you because your views seem to align with the left.

The mind game was that you put the label on people with PTSD, and for that matter, any mental disorder without knowing that the disorders have a wide spectrum. You labeled them all into one group, a group that cannot have firearms until they are deemed as having a "clean bill of health."

So, you put the label on them without knowing the entire truth, just as I did to you. You clearly did not like that. It was not a matter of matching wits… It was proving a point using yourself as an example.
-9 #28 2013-05-17 15:43

Check out the following article. Did you know that 50% of all U.S. citizens would be diagnosed as mentally ill at some time in their life?

The bill would have not allowed those who suffered from mental disorders (even if they were “cured”) from ever owning a firearm.

The original topic was that the senators are afraid of the NRA. That isn’t true. It was because the rights of many would be removed.
+9 #27 Denny Erardi 2013-05-16 18:27
Glad you were able to get some satisfaction out of your mind game playing, Tim. Not really interested in matching wits with you over who can trick whom, but knock yourself out.

Many people who have loved ones afflicted with illness are in some state of denial about the depth of the affliction. Not saying that's you or not, just that those are the facts. You are not a psychologist nor psychiatrist who would be adequately qualified to diagnose the manifestations or likely outcomes of your friend's disease.

Lines have to be drawn somewhere and when it comes to who among the private citizenry is allowed to own a weapon, I'd prefer to err on the side of conservatism.

Not sure how you can have a goal that involves defining who I am. I am not a person who would ever spit on a veteran - literally or figuratively. You saying that I am, doesn't make it so.

Re: your rapist question, I have no clue how to remotely answer that.
-15 #26 2013-05-14 14:18

One more thing... Once you are diagnosed with any affliction, that will follow you for the rest of your life. I said this earlier to which I recieved negative responses... Likely because people don't believe it.

And it is well known that you cannot cure PTSD... you can only help someone figure out how to cope with it. They will always have it in the background.

Or how about this... If a rapist moved in next door to you, but was considered completely rehabilitated by the State's psychiatrist... Would you automatically assume that they are completely safe?

Where do you draw the line, and who draws it?

Add comment

Comments exceeding 1,000 characters will not be accepted. Please refrain from using texting language and spell out all words. All comments are reviewed and must be approved before they are posted.

Security code