WILTSE: Common sense will eventually prevail

It appears that the NRA has won again. It is really disappointing, but not surprising.
Apr 25, 2013


Forty-five senators bravely defended 25 million of us from the danger of being identified as gun owners. They fearlessly defended all of the idiots, criminals and mentally disturbed so that they may purchase guns if they want to.

Just out of curiosity, I wondered where these senators hail from, so I looked it up. I list them here not by name, but by the states that they represent. For the sake of brevity, I list them by their postal code abbreviations.

The senators were from AK, AK, AL, AL, AR, AR, AZ, FL, GA, GA, IA, ID, ID, IN, KS, KS, KY, KY, LA, MO, MS, MS, MT, NC, ND, ND, NE, NE, NH, NV, OH, OK, OK, SC, SC, SD, TN, TN, TX, TX, UT, UT, WI and WY. Not surprisingly, they come from the South or the western hunting states with very few exceptions.

The senator from Florida was Sen. Rubio and the one from Ohio was Sen. Portman. Even though they come from fairly civilized states, their vote is not surprising.

As I said, these senators fearlessly defended the 8 percent of us that comprise morons, criminals and generally stupid people such as white supremacists. Meanwhile, the other 92 percent of us (incidentally, 80 percent of gun owners) will have to live with the fact that these idiots will have access to firearms for the time being, but then we can take solace in the fact that common sense will eventually prevail, even if it may take a hundred or more years.

If that is the case — that it takes in excess of 100 years — we will all be dead and gone, but eventually common sense will come. Also in the event that it takes 100 years, more than 3 million of us will die by being shot to death.

About a month ago, the Tribune published an article about police protection of schools and the ridiculous possibility of arming teachers. They also published a picture of a police exercise taking place at one of our elementary schools, where a supposed criminal was lying prostrate on the floor and an armed guard was pointing a pistol at him. When I saw that picture, I couldn’t help but think, “What if a person from a civilized country were to see that photo?”

By a civilized country, I mean England, Germany, France or even Canada. Such a person must think, “Look at those crazy Americans playing cops and robbers in, of all places, an elementary school.”

In other words, I feel that we must be the laughing-stock of the civilized world with our ridiculous gun laws.

I feel embarrassed at being one of those ugly Americans. I feel embarrassed that we feel it is necessary to place armed guards about our elementary schools. I feel embarrassed also that some people have seriously suggested that we begin to arm our teachers (a thought that I facetiously suggested in a previous article, but actually came about). The thought is so repugnant  to me.

I have to admire the politicians of Connecticut. Connecticut has traditionally been the source of firearms production. After their bold move to limit firearms production, at least three manufacturers of automatic weapon components have decided to move to other states. They are Colt (the most important of them), Stag Arms and Ammunition Storage Components.

Can you guess where Colt is going? You’re right, it’s Texas.

I doubt that President Obama can be successful in combating arms control; it just seems impossible to me. Just believe that it will come about eventually.

Common sense will prevail. Keep the faith.

— By Ralph Wiltse, Tribune community columnist



Thank goodness I live in a "fairly civilized state."


According to the NRA, the ultimate goal of gun control advocates is gun confiscation and total disarmament. Sounds like a fear of government tyranny to me. As an imaginary sequence of events, it could be called a conspiracy theory.

Instead of basing our country's laws on some supposed imaginary conspiracy theory, who don't we base our laws on what is actually happening? I'm referring to the thousands and thousands of gun death every year.


What's "actually happening" is thousands of young men are being murdered in large metropolitan areas largely due to gang violence arising from poverty and drugs. The occasional "white mental" gets all the press because they murder "white" people. No one would dare talk about the incredibly disproportionate number of improvished minorities being murdered because if they did they would labeled "racist." Please Google "Star Parker" go to her website (she is african-american), and understand why the liberals continue enslave the poor (mostly unwittingly).


Thousands.. you make it sound like its the sole cause of death..Lets ban alcohol and vehicles too.. just to be fair.
All firearm deaths: 31,672
Motor vehicle traffic deaths 33,687
The harmful use of alcohol results in 2.5 million deaths each year.

on a side note: Poisoning deaths: 42,917


you people are crazy loones!

Benjamin Franklin - “those who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

i am just glad there are a few senators that will stand up for the constitution and freedoms of Americans...like they have sworn to do.


"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed".

Please tell me how tighter background checks would be infringing on this amendment.

Please tell me how a "well regulated" Constitutional right is a Constitutional right denied.

Please tell me how common sense public gun safety infringes on our well regulated militia, that is, our National Guards, Armed Services, law enforcement, and private citizen possession of firearms for hunting, sport, and protection.


within the background check bill was a point to make background check infomation digital which would allow the government to track who owns guns and who doesn't which is unconstitutional


This information is a myth. It's a conspiracy theory based on misinformation. The NRA promised political retribution against supporters of tougher gun laws, and it called the expanded background checks a first step toward a national gun registry and government confiscation of firearms.

Obama called that claim misinformation, noting the Manchin-Toomey proposal prohibited such a registry. He said the tactics of the NRA galvanized a vocal minority of gun owners against the legislation, which caused some senators to flinch.

One reason the NRA might be focused on registries is because they themselves have created a registry of congresspeople, which includes a scoreboard on how they vote on anything that smacks of guns, and who to target in the next election. I sure don't want the outcome of gun safety issues affecting me and my family to be predicated by extortionists, do you?


valid point, true or not Im unsure. But the moral of the story is that we are NOT a nation where the actions of a few affect the mojority. Personally, I do not want to pay for more background checks when it does not correct the root cause issue at hand. Bottom line is that any kind of restriction, background check, extend magazines, and assault rife will NOT prevent idiots from going on a vigilante from going on a shooting spree in a school, downtown, at the mall, in the theater etc. and certainly won't prevent criminals from having guns and stealing guns. There is no way to prevent it. Arming teachers is a step in the right direction to prevent tragedies without limiting freedom and it has been this way for years...they have armed cops in GHHS right now so this is nothing new.


It pains me to agree with you - if Obama identifies something as disinformation, it must be true - who can we believe if not for Obama and our government:

“As president, I’m going to make it impossible for congressman and lobbyists to slip pork barrel projects or corporate welfare into law when no one’s looking . . . . No more secrecy.”

“When there’s a bill on my desk as president, you – the public – will have five days to look at it online and find out what’s in it before I sign it.”

Post meetings between federal agencies and lobbyists online.

“When there’s a tax bill being debated in congress, you would know the names of the corporations that would benefit and how much money they would get.”

“We would put every corporate tax break and every pork barrel spending on the online for every American to see, and you will know who asked for them. And you can decide whether your representatives are actually representing you.”

“. . . broadcasting [health care] negotiations on C-SPAN so the American people can see what the choices are. Because what we have to do is enlist the American people in this process.”

“I’m in this race to tell the lobbyists in Washington that their days of setting the agenda are over.”

They [lobbyists] will not work in my White House.”


Amazing isn't it. Candidate Obama did indeed make those statements but never gets held to account for any of theses things. Citizen need to ask why? Citizens need to challenge their elected politicians and hold them accountable. The press obviously will not. Write emails, town halls....democracy is participative. Your freedom is counting on it!


Such a target rich environment - it's hard to know where to begin. Let's start with math since I recall perfesser Wiltse was a math teacher. He identified 45 Senators for his disdain for killing gun control, but there are 100 U.S. Senators, which means (correct me if I'm wrong perfesser) 55 were in favor of gun control, so 45 couldn't have stopped it unless, unless, Dingy Harry Reid, working with Barack Hussein Obama, set the rules that a majority wouldn't win. Under Senate rules, a simple majority vote would have opened the measure to up to 30 hours of debate, which would have meant inspecting the details. The White House demanded, and Mr. Reid agreed, that Congress should try to pass the amendments without such a debate. The gun control amendments that thus failed were: Background Checks, Gun Trafficking, Assault Weapons Ban, Ban on High Capacity Magazines. Majority rules would have also opened the bill to pro-gun amendments that were likely to pass. That would have boxed Mr. Reid into the embarrassing spectacle of having to later scotch a final bill because it also contained provisions that the White House loathes. So Mr. Reid moved under "unanimous consent" to allow nine amendments, each with a 60-vote threshold. Read the whole sorry story http://online.wsj.com/article/SB...

The perfesser says: "As I said, these senators fearlessly defended the 8 percent of us that comprise morons, criminals and generally stupid people such as white supremacists." Well, I'm glad he cleared this up. Apparently the "civilized" areas of the neighborhood (Detroit, Chicago, New York, Baltimore, Atlanta, Los Angeles, etc.), that have the most stringent gun control laws that make it illegal for idiots, criminals, morons, and the mentally disturbed to own guns and the highest incidents of crime in general and gun crime in particular, at least are not overrun by generally stupid people - unless those darn White Supremacists have escaped the reservation.

The perfesser says: "Not surprisingly, they come from the South or the western hunting states with very few exceptions." Although the perfesser says he is embarrassed, I'm embarrassed for him. Apparently geography is not his strong suit - he neglected to notice that all of the Midwestern States, except for Michigan and Illinois voted against the gun bill. In information that is new to me, the perfesser doubts that Obama "can be successful in combating arms control." I guess that makes sense given our young President's failure to do anything about Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon.

If the perfesser is so worried about idiots, criminals, morons, and the mentally disturbed purchasing guns he should be writing editorials in favor of all of the states strictly enforcing the federal gun laws already on books. Federal gun crimes include illegal possession of a firearm in a school zone, illegal sale of a firearm to a juvenile, felon, or drug addict, and illegal transport of a firearm across state lines. I point the perfesser to the fact that "The districts that contain Chicago, Los Angeles and New York City ranked last in terms of federal gun law enforcement in 2012, according to a new report from Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, which tracks federal data."

In an attempt to assist the perfesser in his quest to live in a civilized nirvana, since as he pointed out he can't wait the 100 years for common sense to take hold here, I'm providing a link to property for sale on the civilized continent. There must be a community there in search of a columnist. . . . http://www.viviun.com/Real_Estat...


Well hello all, glad to see nothing has changed in loonie left ville. Please continue to post your nonsense post and left wing links. This is getting old and predictable in Trib-ville as well. When you get pinned in the corner on this debate please look to the left for something shiny to divert the conversation. I will keep score as the diversion count begins. Lets begin shall we.


And while you had your little hissy fit, someone just died from a gun. And I bet you a bottle of sparkle sprinkles that neither the perpetrator nor the victim where thinking, "let's see, is he/she liberal or conservative?" while it was going down.

Isn't it your bedtime? Go get those jammies on......


And while you were writing yours Lan, how many people died of alcohol related incidents? Automobiles? Hardened arteries? We can pass laws making it illegal to buy high capacity alcohol containers and the drunks will still get drunk. We have laws regulating how to drive and people still die on the road every day. We have even seen examples of laws intended to protect us from our own bad eating choices. The point is that some laws are unnecessary if we just enforce the current laws and some laws are unable to protect us from ourselves. Why clutter the books with redundant or unnecessary rules when we really need to just hold people responsible for their actions with current laws?


In 2011, there were 32,163 total gun deaths in the US. This is an average of 88 per day.

In 2011, there were a total of alcohol-related fatalities in the US. This is an average of 27/day.

By the way, Michigan has very stiff penalties for drunk driving offenders.

I agree with your last statement, which is why I support the background check proposal which would tighten up screenings and close loopholes of the current background check laws already on the books. You might find the following interesting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May...


The reason drunk driving laws seem to be so stiff is because there are groups like MADD who have applied political pressure on county prosecutors to not plea down cases to traffic offenses instead of misdemeanors. (And rightly so.) Do the same with firearm violations. Few people seriously oppose background checks for firearm purchases and closing the "loopholes" is a logical course of action. However pairing this common sense with divisive issues like the complete ban of semi automatic rifles is what will keep them from passing. Law abiding citizens don't mind having that status confirmed as long as it is not them kept on file. Even conspiracy nuts who think the government could take our guns away (They didn't have any luck disarming Iraqis or Afghans and can't even keep N. Korea and Iran from getting nuclear weapons) need some reassurance that their ownership of a rifle will not be used against them in the future.


The supplied link has the Manchin-Toomey background check proposal, in it's entirety, for you to read. It does not include any new gun bans. The primary goal of this proposal is to tighten up existing provisions and closing loopholes in current laws.



Take subsection C, the National Commission on Mass Violence out and put it in another bill, there would be no way to reasonably object to Manchin-Toomey. I personally don't have a problem with the establishment of an informational commision of this sort, but that is where the opponents will tear the whole thing apart. Other than that, yeah.


Well I'm surprised such an article could be published in REPUBLICAN Ottawa County where every elected position runs unopposed GOP including a Republican Drain Commissioner (what exactly does a Republican Drain Commissioner do anyway?). Anyway....It's time people grow up and realize that we don't need new legislation every time something happens. Further gun control has no benefit or could have even remotely prevented the Sandy Hook disaster. Look at the Bath School disaster, Boston Marathon Bombing, 911 Attacks, etc. They all happened without one critical element.....legally obtained guns. In fact, you would have to ban pressure cookers too. How absurd to always blame others and punish many for the actions of a few nut cases!

My tenth grade English teacher was packing heat in his desk back in 1987 and a few of us knew it. The school shooting epidemic was at its peak back then but rest assure that if something went down, Mr Todd, a Korean War Vet, mentor, and awesome teacher would have been able to diffuse the situation. We all felt safer knowing that someone was watching out for us.


The current background check proposal would tighten up screenings and close loopholes of the existing background check laws in place. It would be a common sense response to inherent holes in existing laws - such as 40% of gun sales, those made online or at flea markets, etc, are made with no background checks at all. Probably like those guns purchased by the Boston killers.

I'm sure it was comforting to know your teacher had a gun present in the classroom. The operative word(s) here is "war vet". Clearly, he had extensive training in the use of firearms. A recent poll shows that over 3/4 of teachers do not want to carry guns in school personally, but do approve of the presence of an armed guard.

And there are many studies out there that show that in the heat of the moment, when the perpetrator has the element of surprise and advanced planning, and confusion reigns, adding more gunfire to the mix does not stop the killer.


Please explain to us how background checks prevent a criminal from obtaining a gun. I have removed all shiny objects from the room so please focus and address the issue and question.



Let me try again, please explain to us how background checks prevent a criminal from obtaining a gun. I have removed all shiny objects from the room so please focus and address the issue and question.lease


I have a better suggestion, but I'm distracted at the moment. I'll work on that focus and return at a later date after celebrating lots of shiny objects.



Post a Comment

Log in to your account to post comments here and on other stories, galleries and polls. Share your thoughts and reply to comments posted by others. Don't have an account on GrandHavenTribune.com? Create a new account today to get started.