I usually bite my tongue when I read a letter from a misinformed leftist, but I have to respond to this ridiculous letter by Sandip Dasverma (Letters, Feb. 1).
First of all, not much of anything this president does involves logic and common sense, just knee-jerk reactions to supplement his political agenda -- which is to strip us of our freedoms and create a society similar to a socialist country.
Sandip states the whole country is behind this new gun control garbage. Newsflash, take note of record gun sales since this shooting. The majority of Republicans are against these new laws -- and even many Democrats are. What he should have said is the whole country is mourning this senseless tragedy that happened in Newtown, Conn., but stop blaming guns. The problem lies deeper than that. More people are stabbed to death, but we don't try to ban knives. More people are killed by drunk drivers, and we do ban that, but it doesn't stop it, because there are always those who don't abide by the laws.
Sandip also attacks capitalism, like there is something wrong with a gun company making a profit; that's the motive for all business, no matter what you manufacture. Thank goodness for the NRA; they protect my rights.
From the perspective of the 18th century, the Second Amendment rationale was as follows:
Since we have no organized military force, it is essential that each householder maintain a flintlock of equivalent power to weapons carried by any invading force, so that we may organize citizen militias to resist any aggression. For this reason, the right to bear arms shall not be infringed.
But, a little more than 200 years later, we now do have a professional, permanent military, sustained and equipped for trillions of dollars. Ownership of military weapons is no longer an individual responsibility for defense against invasion.
There may be some basic right of free people to possess and bear arms, but the Second Amendment purpose of possessing military weaponry equivalent to that of any invading force is no longer a satisfactory reason. That particular "whereas" is nonsense in the current reality
I don't have any fundamental problem with the idea that free citizens have rights to possess and bear arms. These rights and the reasons for them need clear articulation, replacing the obsolete language of the Second Amendment, which does not speak to any of these rights, and which needs to go away.
JOHN F. WILLIFORD
Upholding the law
There have been recent articles in the news media about sheriffs in Oregon and other states who have expressed objection to proposed gun control legislation as an infringement of Second Amendment rights. What concerns me are statements that they not only feel any proposal is unconstitutional, but if it becomes the law of the land -- should the U.S. Congress adopt a measure and it is signed into law by the president -- that they would not enforce it.
I thought it's our courts that determine whether or not a new law is constitutional or not, not a sheriff making a pronouncement. Further, if these sheriffs have sworn to uphold the law, it seems to me the statements saying they would not enforce a law are contrary to their oath of office. If they are not being true to their oath of office, and uphold all the bonafide laws of the land, then perhaps they should be removed from office.