First, let me say that yes, I do belong to the National Rifle Association and the California Rifle and Pistol Association.
I am a life member of both organizations. I have a federal firearms license. Now, having said that, please understand that I respect anyone's feelings about guns.
If they are uncomfortable around guns for whatever reason, then I certainly would not flaunt firearms in front of them. That would be rude and insensitive on the part of any gun owner.
The folks in Walnut Creek, Calif., who decided to push the envelope and go to a coffee shop with guns strapped on, unloaded, in plain sight, with full magazines on the other side of their belts, were very ignorant. They never seem to care, when interviewed, about the rest of us that are law-abiding gun owners. According to them, they did it because they could.
A little common sense would have gone a long way toward letting the anti-gun folks know that we do accept your views and ask only that you respect our views concerning gun ownership.
Did the folks at the coffee shop break the law? No. They just used really bad judgment.
I am always willing to sit and discus guns, both pro and con, with just about anyone. My hope would be to have folks walk away from a conversation with a better understanding of why I like guns and, I would have a better idea of why they do not like guns. Even if we agree to disagree, at least we gave it a shot.
In case you're wondering, no, I am not a hunter. My fun with guns is target shooting. No matter how, or what, you might try to do to stop gun violence, it won't stop just because you enact extremely harsh laws against guns and law-abiding gun owners.
Think about this: The bad guys don't care about what laws California or any other state passes. They buy black market from the trunk of some guy's car. They can get anything from small handguns to rocket-propelled grenades. These are the people who don't care about laws.
You all know that what I am saying is true, trouble is, far too many people suffer apathy and life goes on. This is not right.
Just remember, someday it could come to pass that someone tries to rob you or carjack your vehicle and someone nearby has a concealed weapon (with a legal permit) and is able to chase away the bad guys.
It may not change your mind about gun ownership, however, it might give you a better outlook toward the folks who do own guns.
Please know that every person who legally buys a handgun goes through a background check by the Justice Department here in California. Raising the cost of firearms and ammunition only hurts the law-abiding folks, not the bad guys.
For those who are unsure about firearms, take a firearms safety class. You are not required to fire a weapon if you so desire not to. Just go and learn.
Concerning the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday, I am saddened at Supervisor David Finigan's answer of "sure" to the resolution. Really Mr. Finigan? I hope it was not too much strain on your vocal cords or your thought process.
As for Supervisor Martha McClure, you say you swore an allegiance to the Constitution of the United States. Well, why did you not vote, and please don't go down the "cherry-picking" road. What you did was to show folks, especially in your district, how you really feel.
I want to thank Supervisor Roger Gitlin for having the moxie to stand up and say enough with the idiot laws, lets work together as a group of responsible adults and work toward removing the drug trade as well as the gangs from Del Norte County.
The new battle cry: "if not now, when."
Bill Turck is a Crescent City resident.