In rebuttal to Greg Pfaff’s Dec. 22 letter to the editor and in support of Steve Huppert’s Dec. 6 letter which merely stated, “I wonder if any of the families and friends of the students and faculty that were killed at Virginia Tech attended the [2nd Amendment] meeting.” To my eye Huppert’s statement appropriately frames the debate and is neither “insensitive” nor is it “political grandstanding.” Shouldn’t a voice be given to victims of gun violence? Is that not especially appropriate?
In the main, Second Amendment Sanctuary Resolutions oppose emergency protection orders, enforcement of gun background checks, and red flag laws that permit police or family members to petition a state court to order the temporary removal of firearms from a person. Think long and hard about this. These three provisions are for protection of those most threatened with death or serious harm. None of the three touch responsible gun owners. They are not the ones doing the threatening, nor are they harmed by a background check.
As a 1960s farm kid who hunted nearly every fall and winter day, the responsibility of gun ownership was hammered into me. The first responsibility was to be careful. Faster than you can think things can go horribly wrong when a gun is in your hand, either when hunting or at home. Even in careless teenage years, I and my friends learned the rules. It is not as easy as some may think.
My brother’s closest friend throughout childhood, Stephen F. McClellan, was killed in a hunting accident —a terrific kid with an everlasting smile — a welcome regular at our dinner table. His death was an incalculable loss for my brother, the McClellans, our family and the town of Orange. According to the man who shot Stephen, he thought Stephen was a turkey.
Perhaps Stephen is one of the reasons I am sensitive to giving consideration to those threatened, whether it be from irresponsibility, stalking, domestic violence or other such causes.