Letters to the editor on gun lobby, concealed-carry, smoking

12/19/2013 12:00 AM

12/18/2013 5:11 PM

Keep guns out of wrong hands

I don’t think that the folks who carry concealed weapons are the problem our society faces. It is guns getting into the wrong hands. We need to keep guns from kids, angry husbands or wives, drunks, robbers and the like.

But those in the pro-weapons crowd, which wants nothing passed that might even in an abstract way impinge on the right to carry, have effectively made it easier for those who should not have guns to have easy access. They resist background checks and limits on magazine size, and they support few limits, if any, on the types of weapons we can purchase. They will accept no responsibility for the success of their efforts, and how their intransigence has most of us just hoping we don’t get caught in the cross fire.

We are going to continue to have lots of mass killings, school shootings and the like before we as a society gather up the nerve to address this problem, and woe to any elected official who tries to raise the flag and say something is wrong and the situation needs to be addressed.

MICHAEL G. NICHOLS

Wichita

No longer safe

I find it hard to understand why our elected officials elected not to fight against concealed-carry in our libraries and museums (“Concealed-carry OK’d for most city buildings,” Dec. 11 Eagle). These have always been a sanctuary for me where I could enjoy peace and quiet in a safe environment.

Thanks to the political clout of the gun loonies who feel the need to pack iron for protection against imaginary threats, I am no longer safe. I can no longer visit our local libraries and museums without the worry that one of these folks is going to mistake me for a villain and start shooting.

Guns should be banned in all public places. Maybe we could move the books and artwork to the Sedgwick County Courthouse, which is protected from concealed-carry.

JOHN BROCK

Wichita

Prevents smoking

The Eagle reported that “Kansas will collect about $154 million in revenue from the (tobacco master) settlement funds this year and spend 0.6 percent of it on tobacco prevention” (“Tobacco foes seek funds for prevention,” Dec. 10 Local & State). I think it’s necessary to clarify this statement.

Much of the settlement money in Kansas is used to fund evidence-based early childhood programs through the Children’s Initiatives Fund. Long-term research clearly shows that when children from poor families have access to comprehensive early childhood services in their first five years, they grow to become young adults who are significantly less likely to smoke (as well as a host of other benefits). So the Kansas early childhood community and tobacco foes are partners in supporting evidence-based strategies that really move the needle on tobacco use.

TERESA RUPP

Executive director

Child Start Inc.

Wichita

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