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Letters to the Editor
 

Weapon of mass discussion


Karen Webb March 2nd, 2011

Obviously, Keith Kelley (Letters, “‘Gunhating zealots’ are perpetuating backward thought,” Feb. 9, Oklahoma Gazette) and Bryan Scott (“Who’s paranoid?,” Feb. 2) think it is illegal for Oklahomans to leave the state, and they are oblivious to the fact that Oklahoma law does not cover the entire United States.

I have been a cashier, and I have seen concealed guns when customers were reaching for their wallets in businesses where guns were prohibited.

Scott thinks that I assume iPhones and cell phones in pockets are guns, but there have been people shot while reaching for a cell phone. Kelley says, “The bad guy is the one with a gun killing people.” He proves my point and I thank him. The only way to tell a bad guy with a gun from a good guy with a gun is after someone is injured or dead.

“Law-abiding citizens that legally carry concealed weapons are not just waiting around for a horrific event to occur, so they can take out their gun and blast someone,” Kelley writes. So why are you carrying one? Do you think carrying a weapon no one can see will prevent a horrific event, and you don’t plan to shoot anyone if a horrific event occurs?

There have been people killed by previously law-abiding citizens with concealed weapons, although not usually in a “hail of gunfire.” It usually happens when someone has been drinking too much or gets mad and kills a relative. The kid in Arizona was legally carrying a gun. Open carry is legal in Arizona.

Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, the pistol-packing preacher’s wife, has been caught twice with a legally purchased and licensed gun at the state Capitol, where weapons are not allowed.

Many times I have read or heard the phrase, “he bought the gun that day at such and such a store, so we are going to charge first-degree murder because it showed intent.” I was on federal grand jury duty in the ’80s for a year, and yes, people with legally purchased guns do commit crimes, even in Oklahoma.

Scott, I did not imply that every citizen is packing a gun in plain sight or that they are doing it in Moore. If they were in plain sight, I would feel safer because I would be out of there.

I do leave Moore and Oklahoma. I am not the one who can’t leave home without a weapon.

—Karen Webb 
Moore

 
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03.02.2011 at 02:33 Reply

Karen, I gotta be honest with you.  I never understood why our society even has concealed carry.  

The fact is, people carry guns because they don't intend on being a victim.  In a way it shows that those who carry are actually very scared individuals.  But in a society where people are concealed carrying, they are just as apt to be victimized than someone not carrying at all.  So it's always been my stance that concealed carry doesn't do anything other than calm the public around the carrier.  If one is carrying a gun to prevent becoming a victim, then it should be visable at all times, plain and simple.  Otherwise having it is useless.

In a recent tragedy here in OK a pharmacist used a weapon in defense of his life.  Unfortunately, after the threat retreated, and another assailent remain unconsious, the pharmacist ran after the fleeing assailent (discharging his weapon in the process).  Unable to catch or stop the assailant, he returns to the pharmacy, reloads and proceeds to murder an unconsious man.  This is the danger of guns.  In a hail of gun fire, one can lose sight of what is moral.  I have no doubt that the pharmacist in this case will be convicted  for murder.  The gun advocates I've spoken to feel his actions were justified.  Just another piece of scum off the street, they say.  And the sad part is, these are the people you're trying to communicate with.  They can't see past their own love of the gun and comprehend the moral and ethical issues of using a gun.  They fail to understand the basic concept of the laws regarding deadly force.  That such force is only justified if it done in the immediate defense of ones life or another.  With that fact known, the pharmacist was wrong the moment he ran out the door trying to kill the fleeing assailent.  But these people don't see it like that.  They hold the power of life and death in their hands and they enjoy the feeling they get from knowing at any moment they can play God.  

As you so aptly put it, you're not the one who can't leave the house without a gun.  Those who must are terrified for their lives.  Which (on an unrelated note) makes me wonder how many of these gun carrying religious types can actually believe in an afterlife if they are so inclined to defend this life.  Shouldn't they concern themselves with the spiritual ramifications of using a gun?  After all, it's not a sin to die by another's hand, but it is certainly a sin to cause another to die by your hand.  But I suppose I've taken a more time to consider the philosophy of gun ownership than your average person.

For the record, I have open carried, and I have concealed carried (still have a valid permit).  It's actually a bigger pain in the butt than anything.  Especially when considering the establishments you might go to that can legally prevent you from doing so just by posting a sign at the door.

So am I anti-gun?  No, guns are essential.  But they have their place.  On ones person, in a crowded venue, is not that place.

 

 
 
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