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Letters: Guns and mentally ill

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  • Mad Hatter Provo, UT
    April 30, 2013 12:40 a.m.

    How can anyone identified a someone society doesn't want purchasing a gun, including the anti-social, psychotic mentally-ill, from buying a firearm when the NRA is so opposed to background checks? Although the gun lobby says it would like to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally-ill, they provide no mechanism by which it can be done.

    The NRA supported background checks over 15 years ago, but now it is opposed because more guns, regardless of who is buying them, is big profits for the gun industry. As with any other political issue, gun safety has become a question of money and who's getting it.

    Next time, it may require the child or grandchild of a congressperson the casualty of a mass killer before members of Congress take the issue seriously. It took President Reagan getting shot for the Brady Bill to pass Congress, and then it was weakened by the special interests headed by the NRA.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    April 30, 2013 6:53 a.m.

    Most of us can agree that a background check for guns is a good thing.

    The problem is that politicians are now in the habit of giving a bill a title everyone can agree on in hopes of getting the bill passed, but then putting things into those bills that have a lot opposition. This is what happened with the gun bill that was defeated.

    This bill if it became law would have made it illegal to transfer a gun in many instances without a background check. Want to get your gun repaired? First the gun smith must have a background check. Want to get your gun back from the gun smith? Now you need to get a background check. If the system goes down and you need your gun you are out of luck.

    Also if you sell a gun you must by law keep a record of the sale. What happens if you lose the record? A fine? you lose your gun rights?

  • the old switcharoo mesa, AZ
    April 30, 2013 7:20 a.m.

    Well get a proposal from the republicans to keep firearms out of the hands of the mentally ill. You can't, it might slow sales a little. Nocando.

    This letter is pretty misaimed since you know the republicans won't vote for ANY background checks for firearm sales. You know that, they say it. It could be the best background check plan in the world; nope. It could be a background check devised by a republican; nope, NRA says no.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    April 30, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    Background checks will not keep guns out of the hands of mentally ill people or any other person bent on committing violence. They will steal guns, buy them off the street or produce false documents to purchase. Gun control laws have never worked and they never will but you people keep telling yourselves otherwise as gun violence increases in our society regardless of all the laws. And when the gun control laws we have don't work, demand more and when those laws don't work demand even more laws! This worthless cycle will continue even when guns are totally banned, the crooks will STILL get them and the rest of us will be defenseless against them. In other words you surrender the only defense we ultimately have; self defense.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    April 30, 2013 9:09 a.m.

    @Mountanman
    Hayden, ID
    Background checks will not keep guns out of the hands of mentally ill people or any other person bent on committing violence. They will steal guns, buy them off the street or produce false documents to purchase.

    ========

    [I'm sure you a man of utmost integrity so you must feel the same way about drugs, prostitution, and illegal immigration as well then....those laws don't work so why have them?]

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    April 30, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    LDS? lib,
    why does it not surprise me that you are espousing the legalization of drugs and prostitution?

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    April 30, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    @ LDS liberal. Thanks for making my point! Will passing ever more laws against buying and selling illegal drugs stop people from buying and selling drugs? No they won't. We have gun laws, drug laws and illegal immigration laws but passing ever more laws is not only a waste of time but ridiculous excuse for doing something meaningful! Since drinking alcohol kills more people in America than guns, lets have background checks and mandatory waiting periods for buying alcohol, that will stop drunk driving, right?

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 30, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    @Mountanman
    "Background checks will not keep guns out of the hands of mentally ill people or any other person bent on committing violence. They will steal guns, buy them off the street or produce false documents to purchase. "

    It won't keep guns out of all of their hands but it'll keep guns out of some of their hands, just like ID checks for alcohol purchases at stores won't keep alcohol out of all underaged hands but it'll keep alcohol out of some of their hands.

  • 4601 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 30, 2013 9:41 a.m.

    @LDS Liberal,

    Your examples are nonsense. At last reading, "drugs, prostitution, and illegal immigration" are not guaranteed in the Constitution.

    Placed in perspective, background checks, although not perfect, have value. Sensible checks should be enacted.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    April 30, 2013 9:43 a.m.

    @ alt134. I disagree. If an underage person wants to get alcohol, they will! Don't believe it? Visit any high school. How? The same way mentally ill people or criminals who want a gun will get them! More laws will not stop them, never has, never will.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    April 30, 2013 9:56 a.m.

    Background checks do work. This very newspaper reported that Utah's concealed-carry requirements kept 600 "unqualified" people from buying guns last year. That's 600 purchases that should not have happened and didn't. Undoubtedly, some of these people got guns other ways, but at least we made it harder for them. What's wrong with that?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    April 30, 2013 10:20 a.m.

    @Mountanman
    Hayden, ID
    @ LDS liberal. Thanks for making my point! Will passing ever more laws against buying and selling illegal drugs stop people from buying and selling drugs?

    =========

    OK, let me be more specific then --

    It is illegal to buy sex and drugs at bonafide and licensed dealerships and stores, but it is perfectly legal with no background checks over the internet, at the shows, and on the street.

    I repeat --
    What you are saying is that passing ANY laws to curtail the illegal activity having to do with guns is complete and utter waste of everyone's time and money.

    Banning sales to KNOWN criminals, KNOWN mentally insane, and KNOWN terrorists is not Un-Constitutional, but is just good old common-sense.

    Why do you support such non-sense?

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    April 30, 2013 10:22 a.m.

    Mountainman seems to advocate the elimination of all laws. If people will just break then anyway why even have them?

    Such logic wouldn't even stick in a 9th grade civics class let alone a college class. I'm sorry but anarchy isn't the answer. Never has been and never will be

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    April 30, 2013 12:29 p.m.

    To those who think we need more laws. You are wrong. We already have the laws on the books that prohibit the sale or transfer of guns to criminals and people who would do harm. In fact, the law was passed in 1968. Read the Gun Control Act of 1968.

    The prohibition is already there, and has been there for 45 years. What we don't have is the enforcement.

    Using examples already used here. Making new laws against prostitution or drugs won't stop those activities, but stepping up enforcement of existing prostitution and drug laws will.

    Lets make it something easier to identify with. If you have a rule that your kids can't watch more than 1 hour of TV in a day, yet never enforce that rule, what good will it do to make a second rule stating that your kids can't watch more than 60 minutes of TV, Netflix, Hulu, and other internet based TV programing?

    Lets take the simple approach and enforce the law, rather than making new unenforceable laws.

  • Demo Dave Holladay, UT
    April 30, 2013 12:38 p.m.

    Not only is Mr. Brown correct, but state mental health databases aren't typically shared with other states. All a person has to do is cross the state line to buy a weapon and no one will know that they are incompetent to own a firearm.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 30, 2013 1:12 p.m.

    NOBODY wants guns in the hands of the mentally ill Mad Hater... no... not even the NRA. If you think just because people won't give up their Constitutional Rights for the illusion of security... or if they won't pretend the government knows our state_of_mind... means they WANT the mentally ill to have guns, you really are "Mad".

    Even Sandy Hook residents aknowledge that more screenings would NOT have prevented what happened. The gun owner (The mother) passed all government screening.

    So... Can you really expect the GOVERNMENT to solve this problem? They can't guarantee they know who is stable! The Government just doesn't know that much info about it's citizens to reliably detrmine the citizen's state-of-mind at all times. And they can't monitor to insure all citizen's family or friends are also stable. Can't be done by strangers in Government.

    WE_THE_PEOPLE should know our family members mental state better than the GOVERNMENT does. Don't give children, spouse, etc, access to guns if you know they are unstable!!!

    The Government CAN'T reliably do that! Only we can.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    April 30, 2013 1:30 p.m.

    I for one believe that God will ultimitely hold ALL those responsible for these sorts of crimes.

    Sins of Commission.
    Sins of Ommission.

    Knowing you could do something about it to stop it, and in fact did NOTHING.

    IMHO the pro-gun people - by giving un-restricted access to KNOWN criminals, KNOWN mentally insane, and suspected terrorists - are just as guilty for the crimes as the perptrators themselves.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    April 30, 2013 2:00 p.m.

    To "LDS Liberal" that is a lie. Current US law, specifically the Gun Control Act of 1968 prohibits giving criminals (this includes terrorists) and mentally unstable people guns.

    Why do you continue to lie and ignore existing US law?

    Why are you fighting to get more control and more government involved when the problem is that the government isn't enforcing the laws that they already have?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 30, 2013 2:17 p.m.

    LDS Liberal
    You may be LDS... and you may be liberal... but you still don't speak for God. I think God will hold responsible who he will hold responsible, and he won't be consulting you OR Congress.

    As for those nasty "pro-gun people" who are giving "UN-RESTRICTED access to KNOWN CRIMINALS"... who are they? You certainly aren't describing any proposal I've heard of (name the proposal to give unrestricted access to known criminals, insane, and terrorists please).

    I wouldn't characterise the approach of anybody who doesn't want to do it YOUR way... as "Doing nothing". Even the NRA has proposed doing MANY things. I don't know of ANY group or people proposing doing "Nothing".

    So you may call down the judgement of God on people who don't want to do it your way... but I don't think it's going to work around here. We know nobody's proposing doing nothing, and nobody's proposing giving guns to the criminals, or the insane, or to terrorists.

    Sorry but your guilt-trip didn't make any sense me.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    April 30, 2013 2:21 p.m.

    I for one believe that God will ultimitely hold ALL those responsible for these sorts of crimes.

    Sins of Commission.
    Sins of Ommission

    given from a poster that by his own posting says he supports:
    abortion,
    Pre-marital sex,
    smoking and drinking,
    pornography,
    gambling,
    and other forms of vice and decadence...

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    April 30, 2013 3:00 p.m.

    @jsf
    Centerville, UT

    given from a poster that by his own posting says he supports:
    abortion,
    Pre-marital sex,
    smoking and drinking,
    pornography,
    gambling,
    and other forms of vice and decadence...

    =============

    I will speak for myself thank you,
    and please stop putting false words in my mouth:

    given as the poster who has done NONE of those himself nor encourages others to do so,
    but
    has show the integrity to support others Free Agency to choice for themselves,
    encourages others to submit their freewill to God
    and not tries to pass legislation on everyone else based on one's particular religious view point.

    And then stepping back and letting God hold each responsible.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    April 30, 2013 3:03 p.m.

    Irony Guy,
    600 LEGAL purchases, maybe

    Can you PROVE those turned down for concealed carry permits did not steal guns or buy them on the black market?

    I didn't think so.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 30, 2013 3:42 p.m.

    @Mountanman
    "If an underage person wants to get alcohol, they will! "

    So then why have any laws regulating sale of alcohol to minors? Why should we have speed limits? Heck, why should we require drivers licenses anyway? Why should we have any laws prohibiting anything? Laws don't stop everyone but surely they stop some people. It's the same way that being part of a church that is against pre-marital sex doesn't stop all of its members from engaging in it but surely it stops some of them.

    @Redshirt
    "We already have the laws on the books that prohibit the sale or transfer of guns to criminals and people who would do harm."

    Without requiring background checks on all purchases, how would anyone doing a private sale even know they're selling a gun to is a criminal looking to do harm? The reason the law can't be enforced very well is because it requires proving the seller knew the person was a criminal and didn't care. That's hard to prove when we don't mandate a system that flashes "hey don't sell to this guy".

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 30, 2013 3:43 p.m.

    @Redshirt
    "(this includes terrorists)"

    The NRA has fought back successfully against attempts to ban people on the terrorist watch list from owning guns (their argument was that the list could have errors and that wouldn't be fair to decent people who shouldn't be on the list).

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    April 30, 2013 4:08 p.m.

    Lets use the Alcohol analogy again.

    It is illegal for people under 21 to buy alcohol. In an effort to support that law, we make it illegal for people to sell or give alcohol to those under 21.

    Yes, some will obviously still get it. But when they do, a crime has been committed.

    Using the mentality used previously, why should we restrict stores from selling alcohol to minors? Why not just prosecute those minors who get it?

    Additionally, with todays system of background checks, it is like requiring Grocery stores to check ID's for alcohol purchase, but not the Gas Station down the road.

    Of course the 18 year old will always go to the gas station.

    Criminals and the mentally ill will get guns on line or from other unlicensed dealers. It is just to easy to avoid a background check.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    April 30, 2013 4:48 p.m.

    Why not just let LDS Liberal decide what is right and wrong for all of us? Why should we use agency when he has already figured everything out?

    The People retain all rights to keep and bear arms. At no time have the people ever given away that right nor have they ever authorized any government entity to infringe on that right. A few misguided souls, who apparently have little regard for freedom, insist that Washington has all the answers. They have the perfect solution. They'll just declare that anyone who believes in the Constitution must be mentally ill - therefore, they'll find a way to use that excuse to keep society safe from firearms - except for Obama's Fast and Furious gun giveaway to gangs. He put automatic weapons in the hands of gang members.

    What complete foolishness!

    There is no government on earth that can be trusted to do the right thing for the people. As so many liberals have pointed out, power is in the hands of those who can fund elections. Does anyone think that the people would be protected from government once government could herd us like sheep?

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    April 30, 2013 7:58 p.m.

    @Mike Richards
    South Jordan, Utah
    Why should we use agency when he has already figured everything out?

    [Completely ironic to hear YOU saying that.]

    They'll just declare that anyone who believes in the Constitution must be mentally ill - therefore, they'll find a way to use that excuse to keep society safe from firearms -

    [There it is, there's the hidden paranoia.]

    except for Obama's Fast and Furious gun giveaway to gangs. He put automatic weapons in the hands of gang members.

    What complete foolishness!

    [and Reagan/Bush Sr. armed Saddam Huessin in Iraq to the teeth! Including giving him the chemical weapons Bush Jr's Daddy told him HAD to still be there. Agreed! What foolishness!]

    As so many liberals have pointed out, power is in the hands of those who can fund elections. Does anyone think that the people would be protected from government once government could herd us like sheep?

    [Guns? they don't care about your guns. Gadiantons control Governments and people withtheir banks - and you won't be able to buy or sell anything. Guns? You've got bigger things to worry about than guns.]

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    April 30, 2013 8:00 p.m.

    Mike,
    Lds?lib already has

    LDS?LIB,
    No one is putting words in your mouth, just repeating positions you have espoused numerous times

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    May 1, 2013 9:42 a.m.

    Remember that concept of sitting on a fence, if ye are neither hot nor cold I will spew you out, And then those sins of ommission. Pesky of God to demand you take a stand. Lds Liberal, airnaut, and lds tree hugger, how many more labels to you post under so we all know its still the same poster.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    May 1, 2013 11:20 a.m.

    Well then, I guess we have resigned ourselves to increasing numbers of slaughters of innocents with military-style assault weapons. At some point people will not tolerate this, and that will be the time of capitalism's collapse (for that and a number of other reasons).

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 2, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    Marxist and others,
    We need to take the drama down a notch.

    Not passing this bill does NOT mean we have "resigned ourselves to increasing numbers of slaughters of innocents". It doesn't mean we are doing away with background checks. We already have them and will continue to have them. It just means our legislators in Washington need to try again, they need to try harder this time to craft legislation that is paletable to both sides (not just one) and try harder make the legislation acceptable to ALL Americans (including the few Americans with 2nd Amendment concerns).

    All this pretending that because we aren't all willing to give in to this recent opportunistic overreach means we have resigned to increase slaughters of innocents or that someone's proposing giving guns to the crimials, terrorist and the insane... is just ludicous drama!

    It's not the end of the world OR Capitalism. It's just a bill that didn't pass.