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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

RE: About the ammo hording
By Mike Harpold


April 11, 2013
Thursday AM

Dear Al, I had hoped to show there might be a simple explanation for federal agencies needs for such a seemingly large amount of ammo, jacketed hollow-points at that, and elected to pass along what I knew from my own experience. I did look at your references and not surprisingly wound up on Joe Miller's web page. I prefer to rely on the info Congressman Young provided. He's in a better position to know, and I appreciate that he chose not to perpetuate rumors.

I also appreciate the info you sent me in the mail, but the reasons behind the El Centro Border Patrol memorandum cutting back practice ammo appear to rise from the sequester.

Yes, Al, I did sidestep addressing your insinuation that the shortage of ammo is the result of the socialist Obama regime buying it up to prevent tyranny-hating patriots from defending the second amendment with their guns. But since you press me, I can tell you what I think in two simple words, you're nuts! Nor do I hope to persuade a guy who listens to Rush Limbaugh four hours every single day that Barack Obama is not a socialist. I've got a life!

Al, 280,000,000 Americans do not listen to Rush, not one hour a day, not even one hour a week! You need to spend some time reacquainting yourself with our country; it is far bigger, more stable and yet more responsive to its citizens than you give it credit for being. This summer, why not take a road trip through the west and into the mid-west and just see for yourself how big and diverse America is.

Because of its vastness and the genius of our Constitution, our country has always righted itself no matter how dire the crisis. It's much like a child's toy clown, weighted at the bottom it rolls back upright after being knocked over. Our country doesn't need a militia of angry old white guys armed with guns to keep it free, it depends instead on a broad middle of informed citizens, including us, Al, dedicated to the pursuit of the common good, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, for all.

And while we re on that subject, our Constitution does not say that a person, or even a state, has a right to take up arms against our government if they disagree with a law. We would be a mere banana republics if that were so. The Civil War decided that issue forever. If you want some interesting reading, check what Andrew Jackson said to South Carolinians about that state's Nullification Ordinances.

Which brings us back to guns, Al. Statistics published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that in 2010, the rate of death in Alaska due to injuries caused by firearms was 20.3 per 100,000 residents, twice the national average. You know people who were killed or have committed suicide, Al, and so do I. We go to church with their families and loved ones and see them in Ketchikan stores and at civic events everyday.

Why can't we do something about that, Al? Does the second amendment really prevent us from trying to make our communities, our schools and our homes safer places? Or, are we headed towards a society where self-preservation requires that every man, woman and child over the age of eight carries a gun?

Mike Harpold
Ketchikan, AK

P.S. I'm not saying the term wetback was never used, but it was considered insensitive even fifty years ago. In 1954, the Eisenhower administration dubbed its campaign to gain control of the Mexican border Operation Wetback, but most Border Patrol officers who participated referred to it as The Big Drive. Most officers in my day referred to detainees as illegal aliens, or simply illegals.

The Border Patrol has always been more sensitive to the community it works in than is often given credit. Today, 52% of the officers are of Hispanic descent.

P.P.S. Never thank a man for doing his duty, Al. It ll spoil him.


Received April 07, 2013 - Published April 11, 2013

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