Friday, May 30, 2014
To the Editor:
Does Nikki Haley have South Carolina’s best interests at heart? In the context of tourism, fully 10 percent of the state’s income, it would be hard to make the argument that she has even pondered this point.
After recent fatal shootings in Myrtle Beach, some tourists commented that they would not return here out of concern for gun violence. But Nikki believes that we should all have guns and that we should carry them all the time.
Don’t leave them in your car when entering a bar or restaurant, she warns, they could be stolen.
Will she include that sentiment in the ads to potential out-of-state visitors?
Will that logic attract visitors from foreign countries with sensible gun laws?
Will golfers continue to stream here if they see local golfers packing?
Some politicians feel that since Second Amendment passion elicits generous campaign contributions and brings gun owners to the polls in large numbers, nothing else needs to be considered in this complex issue. But this tragically simplistic level of non-thinking does little to promote effective legislation in a nation with the highest rate of gun killings in the world.
Our most fundamental responsibility as adults is to create a safe environment for our children. Unless you believe, contrary to all evidence, that most people are armed criminals, how does her stance promote child safety?
Unless you regard the TV show “Gunsmoke” as our current reality, how is “more guns” a realistic approach to improving the society we actually live in?
But by virtually eliminating the need for a concealed weapons license and weapons training, Haley would allow the good citizens of South Carolina to carry firearms either hidden or out in the open.
Unless you see life as a re-enactment of the My Lai massacre, how does this help move society in a more rational direction?
Or have I misstated the purpose of good government?
Because there is a demonstrable correlation between the number of guns in circulation and the number of homicides committed, ignoring the lessons and the lost lives of Newtown is unspeakably callous. Who among us would disregard that massacre if our own children were involved?
Has empathy gone on a holiday to make the world more comfortable for Wayne LaPierre?
You may not be a supporter of mass homicide if you think every citizen has a right to own a semi-automatic weapon. You may not even get a secret thrill from watching the mayhem caused by oversized ammunition clips. It’s possible that you endorse weapons whose only use is to kill people and yet are not killer.
But you should reflect on the possibility that a Jared Loughner (Tucson) , an Adam Lanza (Newtown), a Nidal Hasan (Ft. Hood), a Seung-Hui Cho (Virginia Tech), or a Dylan Klebold (Columbine) is hiding out in the vicinity of your aorta.
But stay strong. Nikki’s heart is as repulsively devoid of empathy as your own.