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Home News Community letters Ridgel: Thoughts on Sandy Hook and gun control

Ridgel: Thoughts on Sandy Hook and gun control

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Here are some thoughts regarding the recent murders at Sandy Hook.

The colossal arrogance and ignorance of elected officials astonish me. Mississippi Sen. Bilbo once offered a bill to simplify pi by reducing it from an unending decimal to the numeral three. If it had passed, wheels would have come off all over America.

Politicians pushing gun control are protected by guards with guns. Sen. Feinstein carried a gun in her purse before she went to Congress. Congresswoman Pelosi appointed Mike Thompson to solve our gun problems. That he owns a gun and served in Vietnam was cited for his qualifications. Really.

Talk about “assault weapons” being unnecessary for hunting is nonsense; the Constitution discusses keeping our guns to form a militia to defend ourselves from oppressive governments, not hunting. The greatest murder rate in the history came from citizens owning no guns and government owning all, i. e, Hitler and Stalin.

Switzerland, with about the world’s lowest crime rate, teaches citizens at an early age to use and carry guns for life.

The largest army in the history of the world consists of American civilian gun owners with three hundred million guns. That’s 60 times the size of our army in WWII. Efforts to remove their firearms would make our earlier Civil War look like a spitball fight.

Mass murderers are crazy, not stupid; they attack gun-free zones like schools and theaters. They don’t attack shooting galleries.

What if the young teacher, Victoria Soto, murdered at Sandy Hook, had been trained and armed with a gun to defend her students instead of just her unprotected body?

If my neighbor has a magazine holding a thousand rounds it’s no concern to me. However, if some nut comes at me with a magazine containing 10 rounds I want one with 20.

Jack the Ripper, Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer all used knives. The greatest mass murder in American history, 911, was accomplished with a few box cutters. What if all the passengers had been armed with pistols firing hard rubber bullets, extremely painful to hijackers but harmless to the airplanes? Likewise with those movie goers in Colorado.

Laws requiring guns to be kept in safes are elderly abuse. Old people with no children can’t pick up a safe and hit an armed intruder before getting shot.

Gun control laws are illogical; a person planning murder won’t surrender his guns because he fears a gun-carrying fine more than the death penalty.

Randy Ridgel lives in Kelseyville, Calif.

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Shores_of_Kabatin
When the Zodiac Killer was threatening to kill kids in school busses, Clearlake (Highlands) took action to protect their kids
written by a guest, January 11, 2013
I was in elementary school and recall very clearly waiting for the school bus one morning - when it approached, there was a Willy jeep following closely behind the school bus - within the jeep were 4 men (either volunteer firemen or local dads) all holding shotguns, with muzzles upward. We had no idea that this was happening, but it did not upset one kid getting on the bus that day. It made us feel safe getting on the bus. We took comfort in knowing that our citizens were protecting us kids. At this time, Clearlake (city now) was under Sherriff's control - they didn't have enough deputies to follow each and every bus, so volunteers were needed.....that's American. We didn't need some City Council making decisions for us - rather we had a Sherriff and/or community with balls.
Greg_Cornish
Statistics
written by Greg_Cornish, January 10, 2013
Greg_Cornish
AR-15 also known as The Baby Killer
written by Greg_Cornish, January 10, 2013
Vietnam draft dodger?
upsidedown
gun shows
written by a guest, January 10, 2013
it is already against the law to buy a firearm at a gun show or any where in california even from a private party without going through a back ground ck with a licensed ffl.. you guys need to do actaul research be for you start trying to force your opinion on law abiding citizens.
Baxter
...
written by Baxter, January 09, 2013
AR-15 also known as The Baby Killer
Greg_Cornish
What's cheap?
written by Greg_Cornish, January 09, 2013
I've never heard of a cheap AR15smilies/grin.gif
jmadison
Attention:
written by jmadison, January 09, 2013
If anyone wants to buy a cheap AR-15, we will be selling several of them at the next gun show in Ukiah. No background check needed. Its your right!! Come pick one up for your Mother in Law while your there,or better yet, your kid's school teacher.
Greg_Cornish
Itersting CNN put this online
written by Greg_Cornish, January 09, 2013
[urlhttp://www.cnn.com/2012/12/19/opinion/bennett-gun-rights/index.html?iref=obnetwork]The benefit of gun rights
Greg_Cornish
Yes
written by Greg_Cornish, January 09, 2013
In an overwhelming majority of cases, without question. In fact, in a break in at our house my wife overpowered the person breaking in because of strength and determination not size. That prompted us to arm ourselves because I'm quadriplegic and she won't often be able to do that. I want stopping power. I don't want to be a victim. I told the LCSO someone was screaming they were going to kill me and was kept on the phone answering stupid questions while I waited 45 minutes for a response. That's why I voted for Rivero who said he would fix that. He didn't. Mitchell just made excuses.

I believe everyone no matter how strong can be overpowered by someone stronger and should be given the right to have an advantage.

Aside from that It's not only about that. I believe in a armed citizenry to protect us from a rogue government.
HeyBill
Try this link for the Stand Your Ground/Castle Law data
written by HeyBill, January 09, 2013
Baxter
...
written by Baxter, January 09, 2013
Do you believe there is any way to settle differences in opinion other than violence?
Greg_Cornish
The study
written by Greg_Cornish, January 09, 2013
Do you have the results to that study, a link? Do you feel then that the person with the most physical strength is always right in the argument and can beat those smaller and weaker into submission?
Baxter
arm'em all and let them kill each other
written by a guest, January 09, 2013
Since NRA Wayne is clearly insane, I did not see wisdom in his suggestion that we need more guns, until I learned about a fascinating study about the rise in homicide rates in "Stand Your Ground" states. The largest rising demographic being killed is white men, and the largest rising demographic of killers is other white men. White men killing white men. That's causing soaring homicide rates in "Stand Your Ground" states.

Authors of the study that collected this data provide detailed analysis ruling out various reasons for the dramatic rise in whitemen-killing-whitemen homocides, finally narrowing the list down to one:

Prior to Stand Your Ground laws, arguments between white guys were usually settled with fisticuffs. But post-Stand Your Ground, those guys are now packing heat, and using it on each other. There is an amazingly simple flaw in the idea that "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun" -- it turns out, every guy packing heat sees himself as "the good guy."

So in every confrontation, each guy thinks the OTHER guy is the "bad guy" and that the Stand Your Ground law gives him the right to shoot.

Now I am inclined to see wisdom in arming them all... Then, they can all shoot each other.

But where would the Republican Party be, without them?
jmadison
...
written by jmadison, January 07, 2013
This arguement should be about mass murder rampages when someone flips out. If you want to talk about hammers, cars, cancer and other ways that people die you really don't belong here.
Here is the issue: If you want to kill yourself and go out in a blaze of death to all those you hate...do you go buy a hammer??:

Fine...I give up. change nothing. Keep selling AR-15s at "gun shows." what if every American citizen had an AR-15? Would murder go up or down? Answer that one.
Greg_Cornish
Ou talked alot guy
written by Greg_Cornish, January 07, 2013
By you forgot to make your point. I also love how you argue with people who are in agreement with you.
Greg_Cornish
Yes
written by Greg_Cornish, January 07, 2013
A huge majority of gun deaths are by handguns. So lets nab assault type weapons. That's good thinking.
Shane Lee
Still an awful argument.
written by guywithanopinion, January 07, 2013
Hammer deaths really?! This whole death by household tool argument/comparison is not close to being comparable. There are so many more hammers in the US...millions more and yet, guns was close. Look up screwdrivers, falls in the bathroom, ingesting poison, and so on...just not relevant. Guns are tools. Hammers are tools. Spoons and forks are tools. Hammers are designed to hammer nails. Spoons and forks are designed to eat food. Guns are designed to shoot small metallic objects at people / animals. Guns in their truest sense are DESIGNED to take life.
Again... Many more hammers and guns designed to take life.
Intelligent gun owners understand this.
HeyBill
Guns vs. Hammers
written by HeyBill, January 07, 2013
It's interesting how people pick and choose their statistics to make their points. 323 rifle deaths vs. 496 with hammers and clubs (bludgeoning). Ahhh...but rifles are rarely used to murder people or commit suicide (I'm guessing suicide by hammer is pretty rare smilies/grin.gif). The overall US gun death total in 2007 was 31,224, almost 100 times higher than the "rifle" figure people like to quote. By 2015 as many people in the US will die from gunshots as from traffic accidents.
HeyBill
Typical Ridgel
written by a guest, January 07, 2013
As usual, Mr. Ridgel, you offer "facts" not known in reality. Senator Bilbo was a racist of the worst sort, and did once suggest deporting 12 million black Americans to Liberia in order to reduce unemployment (!), but he never attempted to redefine the value of Pi. The Indiana legislature attempted it in 1897. Robert Heinlein in Stranger in a Strange Land mentioned Tennessee changing Pi as a way to bring mathematics into compliance with the Bible, and there was an internet hoax claiming that Alabama had changed Pi to 3 in 1996.

BTW, my late Father-in-Law, who was on the Board of Directors of the NRA and the CRPA and editor of the CRPA newsletter The Firing Line, told me that anybody who keeps a loaded firearm in the house for self-defence is an idiot.
Shane Lee
Got it.
written by guywithanopinion, January 07, 2013
Strong logic, great points, and someone who does not get sucked into your rhetoric would bore me to...point taken. Your closed minded approach is what is hurting our community and country.
Greg_Cornish
No
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
I'm just bored with you.
Shane Lee
As I thought.
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
Too much logic? Not enough? Just as I expected.
Greg_Cornish
Gun Control
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
Shane Lee
Couldn't help it...
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/L...urora-Colo

This hostage situation ended badly.... This was sad. Yes, guns were involved, not hammers or clubs. What if he had a club or hammer... Deaths could have still happened but things may have been different and victims may have had a chance. Just saying....

Truthfully, I paste this story because no on will talk about the real issues here (like the Newton killer)... the gunman's mental health would truly be the issue. Could he have been treated/ helped? Also, as a responsible gun owner, I don't think the gun is the issue in this story as it reads as if his weapon was not of the "extreme" variety.
Shane Lee
Convenient...
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
Your inability to address the points put forward, coupled with your conveniently inserted "pro gun" articles further demonstrates your closed mind.
There are plenty of stories of homeowner(good guy) shooting the bad guy and maybe even more than the ones in which an accidental shooting happens (sometimes involving kids). I won't waste time finding the articles in which innocents get shot.
Love the "if...if..." whatnot but it clearly lacks relevance or bearing. IF goes both ways.

I see that you, yet again, have chosen to ignore points put forward but you did click on the little minus sign. IF only you would acknowledge the points of others.... Lol.
Greg_Cornish
And another
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
http://www.examiner.com/articl...-mom-s-gun

Upon further reading, I see that you think teachers should be armed. What if Miss Soto had had a gun. What if she accidentally shot a student?! What if a student stole her gun and shot someone? What if someone overpowered her, took, her gun and shot someone? What if someone stole her gun and shot themselves?


Like my grandfather used to say. "If.. if.. if.. If my aunt had testicles, she'd be my uncle."
Shane Lee
You are wrong but entitled.
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
Where you are entitled to your judgement (opinion), you are incorrect. If my view is "microscopic" that is fine. Your macroscopic view is one that oversimplifies and can only see the big picture (I.e. must have gun to thwart bad guy.... Et.). Those closed minded approaches do not account for the accidental shootings that take place each year.
I wish?! I do not want people coming to my door... They may find a responsible gun owner to greet them. I wish that the general public would come to terms with the dangers associated with guns. I wish that responsible gun owners would step forward to promote responsible gun ownership and storage. And I wish those same owners would admit that certain "extreme" guns should just not be owned by the civilian public. We all understand that change would take time and that the "bad guys" would still have said "extreme" guns.
No sir, I wish for just a common sense approach to this.
Greg_Cornish
And another
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
Greg_Cornish
Mom shoots intruder to save her child
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
Greg_Cornish
Judging by your opinion
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
You have a microscopic view of things. You never allow yourself to see the bigger picture. Do you wish guns to be confiscated from the public in a door to door operation?
Shane Lee
Here we go...
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
My point, if everyone had guns (like hammers and clubs), we would have even more shootings and fatalities....just an odds thing
Lol...banning hammers...funny stuff. The whole hammer, spoon, household tool analogy is almost as unintelligent as the "guns don't kill people..." argument. Of course there are more hammer incidents as there are more hammers. What our elected officials ans the general public should be discussing is our mental health situation. We have many sick individuals who need help. They have hammers, clubs, and probably guns (or maybe access to guns...ala Newton shooter.). Unlike hammers, it only takes one shot to kill and another to kill again and so forth. If the Newton shooter had had a hammer, he would have not killed so many. Kind of a common sense thing.
I look forward to thoughtful and considerate replies.
Greg_Cornish
Guy with an opinion
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
So you do advocate banning hammers? Would that make sense using your logic? It more hammers means more deaths, then ban hammers and clubs? Using your logic I deduce this. There are far more good people than bad people. Put guns in everyone's hands and it will decrease the number of bad people. I have more guns than hammers by the way.
Greg_Cornish
Of course it's a good illustration.
written by Greg_Cornish, January 06, 2013
Sorry, I don't get your point but thanks for trying.
Shane Lee
Odds and stats...
written by guywithanopinion, January 06, 2013
Hmmm... More deaths with hammers and clubs... Ok.
Hammers are found at all hardware stores and many other stores. Just about every household has one or more hammers in their home. Clubs... Well, "clubs" aren't expensive and may even be free if you are creative enough. So, a reasonable person could fashion one from many things.
So, simple math / odds: more hammers and more clubs = more deaths.
Wouldn't it also mean more guns would result in more shootings? (scratches head)

The whole hammer, club, fork and spoon argument does not actually serve you well here. In fact, it may show diminished faculties.
Humboldt Stuff
The socialist
written by Humboldt Stuff, January 05, 2013
welfare state can ONLY be implemented by the confiscation of weapons, deletion of religion from everywhere (KALIFORNIA TEACHERS DIS-ASSOCIATION...AKA LARRY ALLEN), and suspension of most of your constitutional rights.
Greg_Cornish
I'm on board Randy
written by Greg_Cornish, January 05, 2013
Semi automatic, high capacity magazine guns only have one purpose. Killing people. I want one within my reach at home so if some son-of-a-bitch comes through my door unannounced he goes down fast. If I have to defend myself against my government I can.

According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle. For example, in 2011, there was 323 murders committed with a rifle but 496 murders committed with hammers and clubs. Even more with bare hands!
Rex
Guns won't....
written by a guest, January 04, 2013
....save you from a militarized police force...and they sure won't save you from your government.

Armed teachers, really?...Rubber bullets on airplanes?...wow. If there was a 'kook test', you'd have just flunked it.

And guns don't solve problems.....people do.
aluchsinger
...
written by aluchsinger, January 03, 2013
Guys, you're arguing with me about getting rid of more of your civil liberties. Let's be honest, we're talking about a very small percentage of the nation's annual homicides. The problem isn't easy access to 30 round magazines, airplanes, or box cutters...or alcohol and cars for that matter; it's the people and their motives. This is a very difficult problem to solve and the solutions are often very specific to each case. I don't claim to have the solution, but I don't want us as a nation to forfeit our rights so easily. We've done this for many things, like the patriot act and the NDAA to name a couple of the recent big ones. The reason is always "security" and little by little we turn into a police state where the government has all of the power, and the people have none.

jmadison, I respect your arguments, and I had to think about the grenades and rocket launchers. By principle, yes, honest civilians should be able to own these things. I would argue that grenades and rocket launchers kept in residential neighborhoods or places where they put others at risk of accidental explosion are infringing on your neighbor's property rights (safety) and should be governed by regulation. Practically, I would not push for these things. These are several orders of magnitude above what i'm advocating, which is to allow honest civilians to continue to own assault rifles (which is currently legal in most states).

Again, I think the weapons that the local police departments use to protect the safety of our domestic communities is a different order of magnitude of what our military uses to invade other countries. I feel like the conversation is starting to get somewhat philosophical about what weapons a "free" society should be able to own. So, I'd like to keep this discussion focused on assault rifles. If a police officer feels it necessary to have such weaponry to protect the public from criminals, then I would also like to have access to the same tools to do the same for my property and family.

30 round mags vs. 10... it's very simple: 30 rounds is more powerful (and not 3x as powerful, but probably 20% or so compared to having three ten round mags ready to go). Is it not plausible that the same criminals that may be encountered at a bank robbery could be conducting a home invasion robbery? For my personal choice, I would like the higher capacity mags. I am not a criminal. I just want to protect my rights with the best tools.

You brought up another interesting point about not being able to take a stand against our nation's military and therefore we should simply let the idea go. Where's your patriotic spirit? smilies/smiley.gif Do you think the revolutionaries were well-equipped to defeat the British? (we did) Do you think the Afghan militants are well-equipped to take on the US military? (it's been a decade) I use these two examples to show that small arms can be very effective and we should insist on keeping them.

Overall, here's my BIG problem with the anti-gun arguments: it's a slippery slope that leads to continued, subtle, erosions of our personal liberties. You start with automatic weapons, then, assault rifles, then semi-automatic weapons, then bolt action rifles... then the discussion goes to alcohol, drugs, cars that drive too fast, unhealthy foods, etc. Meanwhile we allow the government to be practiclaly exempt from all of these things.

At the end of the day, there are bigger issues to fight, and I wish that we as a community would fight together for the ones we agree on. Should the federal government be able to spy on civilians without a search warrant? Should the federal reserve be able to print dollars out of thin air to finance our deficit government spending and bank bailouts? Should the president be able to detain american citizens INDEFINITELY WITHOUT TRIAL as long as he considers that person to be related to terrorism? I'd much rather that we spend our energy and blood pressure on these types of issues. Just some links so you know what i'm talking about. I just picked the first three that came up on Google News. Feel free to do your own research.

NDAA detention without trial: http://rt.com/usa/news/obama-n...ident-288/

Wiretapping without warrant: http://www.arabamericannews.co...ticle=6225

Fed printing money: http://www.washingtontimes.com...ing-money/
jmadison
...
written by jmadison, January 03, 2013
Please Mr. Luschinger: Answer the question.

What weapons should the public be allowed to own. You said "Why do cops have semi automatics if they aren't necessary?" Are you serious? Should I ask then "Why does the military have tanks and fighter aircraft if they aren't necessary?"
You can use sarcasm to avoid answering a question but you really can't give me an answer as to why an automatic 'machine gun' should be legal and grenades and rocket launchers can't. If you can't answer the question then we will probably never get anywhere.

My answer is that we SHOULD be able to own gun, handguns, shotguns, rifles, but not the type of rifles that can unload more than 10 rounds without reloading...or I should say 10 rounds in 5 seconds without thinking.
Unfortunately I do think that there is NO way of being able to screen people (by other people) and be able to decide who will lose their mind and go on a rampage. Ever walked in on your wife humping another man?? What would you do if you had a gun in the closet? 9 bullets should be enough for you. You don't need an automatic weapon.
Shane Lee
"necessary" defined
written by guywithanopinion, January 03, 2013
"necessary" for public public use would be the key there. Law enforcement and military personnel will need weapons that the civilian public should not own.
aluchsinger
...
written by aluchsinger, January 03, 2013
If assault rifles aren't necessary, why do police departments use them?

Also, are you suggesting that semi automatic rifles that aren't in the "assault" category should remain legal?
jmadison
...
written by jmadison, January 03, 2013
aluschinger:
No one can answer the question: Why should assault rifles (high capacity auto or semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15) be legal but grenades and shoulder launched rockets be illegal? Why should we give up that freedom to defend ourselves from the government?? Randy says we need to be able to fight our own federal government and military. How is this possible if they limit ANY methods to defend ourselves?
Lets be honest. We can NOT defend ourselves from our military. We need to let go of this idea because it is long gone. NOW, lets have a rational discussion on what we need to protect ourselves from someone who breaks into our house. There is no reason a shotgun, rifle or handgun can't do the job and they should all remain legal.
aluchsinger
...
written by aluchsinger, January 02, 2013
I tend to agree with Randy. Guns are an important factor in maintaining your personal liberty.

If a group of people enter my home to do harm, what do you all suggest that I do to defend myself? Let's say one of the guys is the disgruntled policeman down the street?

Fast forward 20 years. You have a president that decides to target American citizens because he finds your speech to be offensive. You going to let them detain you indefinitely without trial? Or how about assassinate you? Both of these things are legal, by the way. Signed into law last year.

You guys too easily give up your freedom for a perception of additional security.
Shane Lee
On behalf of responsible teachers...
written by guywithanopinion, January 02, 2013
Randy, you are clueless.
Upon further reading, I see that you think teachers should be armed. What if Miss Soto had had a gun. What if she accidentally shot a student?! What if a student stole her gun and shot someone? What if someone overpowered her, took, her gun and shot someone? What if someone stole her gun and shot themselves?
No Randy, your ignorance and self-importance have angered this teacher. Teachers should NEVER carry guns in schools!
jmadison
...
written by jmadison, January 02, 2013
hmmm...that sounds like exactly what I just said. We need to figure out which guns/weapons should be available to the general public. There will be NO way to adequately screen a person that tells us they should be allowed to own granades, machine guns, or aircraft carriers, so lets first decide which weapons should be out there at all because they WILL fall into the wrong hands, even if those hands were previously screened and deemed 'responsible.'
Randy is an old coot that likes to hear himself talk.
Shane Lee
weak arguments presented but knee jerk reactions dont help
written by guywithanopinion, January 02, 2013
This piece is littered with inaccuracies and is based largely on personal / political beliefs. The real thing to note is our society's knee jerk reaction following the Netwon tragedies. Why hasnt this debate happened sooner? Many tools can turn into weapons that can hurt / kill others (see Walmart, grocery, and/or hardware stores near you) and we have little regulation in and around them.
The thing to consider is the instant and irreparable damage that guns can cause. There are so many responsible gun owners here in Lake County and throughout the US and guns are easy to come by. The true discussion needs to center around which weapons should be made available and which weapons should NOT be made available to the civilian public. Responsible gun owners deserve to have their Constitutional rights protected and the general public needs to be protected from irresponsible gun owners.
I hope the discussion turns to which guns need to be made illegal and what a "responsible gun owner" actually looks like. Why not screen, test, and certify gun owners (as we do now) but also hold gun owners accountable for proper storage and handling of weapons. Guns will always be a part of our country and we will always have the most guns per capita... good or bad.
I hope this discussion turns to the real issues... and gets away from rhetoric, partisan politics, and name calling.

PS-This author should be given a title and a desk with LCN as his pieces are regularly featured and they always provide a good laugh.
jmadison
...
written by jmadison, January 02, 2013
box cutters, knives, airplanes and cars all have other uses than killing people. Semi automatic, high capacity magazine guns only have one purpose. If you think that we, as individuals and militiamen, need to be able to overthrow our government, then we will need to legalize tanks, aircraft, rocket grenade launchers if we stand any chance at all at overthrowing the US military. Where do we draw the line with which weapons should be legal? Do you have a real answer for this question other than regurgitated NRA analogies and one liners?
Nscale
Wow.
written by Nscale, January 01, 2013
Randy, you are so wrong on so many things that it it beyond reality.
What trash can of history did you get these stats from?.

Ken Price
woodyhughes
...
written by a guest, January 01, 2013
Well said, Randy. Ignorance can be remedied; stupidity cannot.
Herman W. Hughes, Captain, US Navy (Retired)

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