Editors Note: This was sent by email to parents who have children attending schools in the Wilson County Schools system. It was forwarded to The Wilson Post, and we thought our readers would be interested in it as well.
By WILLIAM E. FARMER
If you havent been to a gun show, you have missed a cultural treat. The folks who regularly attend these events are average Americans who love guns and will be pleased to show you what they love about weapons.
The typical gun show is held in large areas with plenty of room to set up tables for gun dealers and gun collectors who display their guns of all types for sale or for viewing by other gun folks. It is a busy fun event organized to promote gun ownership.
At the gun show there are presently two types of gun sales -- licensed dealer sales operating under Federal law (required to perform a background check on the gun sale) and private non-dealer sales and gun exchanges which are not required to perform a background check to see if the gun purchaser has a criminal record or mental health problems.
Some non-dealer gun sales without a background check occur in the parking lot out of car trunks before the gun owner has entered the gun show. This is called the Gun Show Loophole and is the subject of the proposed gun control law debate. The question is, Should we close the loophole and require background checks? Or will this type of regulation impose a loss to our individual rights under the Second Amendment?
Will this proposed background check requirement extend to private gun sales that are not part of gun show events? Will such a check help stop mad men from getting guns or is it just an attempt to stop the unstoppable? What do you think?
We know that recent polls show that 92 percent of our citizens believe background checks should occur at gun stores; 87 percent want checks at gun shows; and 75 percent are for checks on private sales (See Time/ CNN, January 2013). The impact of the Newtown and other shooting events has left a mark upon us. But what is too much? Should the rights of law abiding people be constrained because of some mentally unstable persons? Those who have been victims or have lost loved ones from gun violence will say it is necessary. Do you agree or disagree?
If it saves one life, is it worth the restriction on our freedom? What if that life was someone you love? Can the proposed background check really make a difference? We are a nation of guns. There are an estimated 310 million guns in the USA, the most guns per person nation in the world.
The second nation with highest guns per capita is Yemen, a Middle East terror stronghold. There may be a message in that statistic.
One of our greatest Founding Fathers, President John Adams, believed our citizens will meet our civic challenges by working for the common good. In the gun control debate, what is the common good? I wish John Adams was here to help us.
The proposed background check amendment recently prepared by Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and others has gained some support in the U.S. Senate. Sen. Manchin has a high rating by the National Rifle Association (NRA). The proposed law requires a background check for a criminal record or mental problems involving all gun sales except to your family. Family includes your immediate family and in-laws and extends to your first cousin. In some areas of the country, being able to sell to your cousin without a background check opens gun sales to a large part of the persons county.
Under the Manchin Amendment, all sales at gun shows and on the Internet or in publications would require a background check or make the persons involved open to a Federal violation carrying a penalty of imprisonment for up to five years.
Persons who fail the background check are unable to purchase a weapon. Proponents of the Manchin Amendment claim the proposed law does not permit a Federal Gun Registry which is feared by many in the gun community. Opponents of the background check law point to the fact the Newtown tragedy would not have been stopped by this proposed law. Even so, the parents, relatives and friends of the Newtown victims have gone to Washington, D.C. to support the Manchin Amendment which closes the Gun Show Loophole.
The debate in the U.S. Senate will be interesting. After that the U.S. House will take up the subject. The House leaders have already declared the matter to be dead on arrival. What do you think should happen?
I suggest you go see a gun show before it changes. The gun folks are nice. Most are average citizens who love guns. They will be happy to see you. If the Manchin Amendment passes, the gun shows may disappear.
Editors Note: William E. Farmer is a local attorney who has served as Tennessee Democratic Party Chair and as a Lebanon City Councilor. He is a Tennessee Gun Permit Holder.
By B. KEITH WILLIAMS
Lebanons Public Square is thecenter of our beautiful city whichis full of beautiful people. OurPublic Square is one of the townsgreatest assetsyet it alsohappens to be one ofthe least attractiveand most dangerouspartsof our city!
I am atrial lawyer. My job requires me to visit squares all over the State and throughout the Southeast. I can honestly say I have been to 100 percentof thetown squares in Middle Tennessee and 75 percent of town squares in West and East Tennessee. Our Square has fallen behind the times. We need to capitalize on our biggest asset,as other cities have.
By B. Keith Williams
Thirteen Tennesseans are dead and more than 60 others are suffering from life-threatening meningitis. Survivors face an unimaginably painful, months-long or years-long battle against the dangerous fungus that is burrowing into their tissue and bones.In most cases, the killer fungus was injected into their bodies directly into their spinal columns by for-profit medical clinics. These clinics bought cheap drugs from an out-of-state corporation that reportedly had no license to make and sell the drugs as they were doing.
By ANNE DONNELL
You can use this for your column. Ive looked it up, but the explanation is unclear. What is the difference between continuous and continual?-Smart Friend
Its so good to have smart friends; their conversation alone is priceless. Embroider that on something.Which makes me think of Alice Roosevelt Longworth. She famously displayed an embroidered pillow which read, If you havent got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me. You can purchase a T-shirt sporting that from Caf Press (online) or look around locally and have it done. Nice to wear on those days youre feeling the misanthropy (general hatred, disdain, or mistrust of the human species or human nature). The political season tends to bring on the misanthropy. The U.S. presidential season brings on the misanthropy all right and the heart attacks and the strokes and some highly questionable version of truth.
By MARK LEE
I was 5 years old in Ms. Alice Barbies Kindergarten on South Tarver when Gaye Baird hired my mother, Dorothy Lee, to be a secretary in the Admissions office at Cumberland College. Gaye Baird, Charlie Gregory, Bonnie Fakes, Merlin Sanders, Dean Howard, Dean Robinson, Kenneth Hawkins, Mary Templeton, Mrs. Imogene Ahles, Dr. Ernest L. Stockton...the names and faces are etched in my memory. You see, I was a latch-key kid back when you could let a 5-year-old walk across back yards to school. We lived on Cleveland Avenue, a block away from Cumberland.
The following year as a 1st grade student at McClain Elementary, I continued to walk to school, but it was after the last bell rang that things would get interesting...Around the block and down South Hatton I would walk to Memorial Hall. It was there, every afternoon from 3:15 to 4 p.m. when mom got off, that I made my rounds of the Admissions Office, the Deans offices and the financial office where Mrs. Templeton and Mr. Hawkins carefully counted the debits and credits of Student accounts. The only office I didnt wander into was Dr. Stocktons. Mrs. Ahles guarded the Presidents Office in her polite and efficient manner and when Dr. Stockton would chance on me in the halls, he would politely say hi and keep about his business of running the school.
By GEORGE ROBERTSON, M.D.
What are you doing on fall break? That is the question overheard around town. Most people are going on a trip or taking their families to the beach. Many of the good things are in the planning stages and most families already have hotel or condo reservations for their clan to enjoy.Remembering back to my childhood brings on a different experience for the fall hiatus. Growing up in West Tennessee, this time of the year was reserved for the fall harvest and especially in Crockett County where the schools would get out for six weeks for cotton picking.
By GERA SUMMERFORD
The new film Wont Back Down introduces a new-to-most concept of parent-trigger laws laws that enable parents at a school to call for the firing of teachers, closing the school, or turning it over to a private charter school operator.
The film suggests that the best way for parents to improve their childs education is to use the parent-trigger law to take over the school and hand control over to a charter school. The film never takes into account the reality that parent-trigger laws have no track record of success.While the movie offers a heartwarming story of a mother fighting for her child, it is just that a heartwarming Hollywood story. The reality is that Wont Back Down is divisive and designed to pit parents against teachers, school boards and the teachers union.
By ANNE DONNELL
Whats the story behind celebrating birthdays? Is this ancient or more recent? Finally, should I write Happy Birthday! or Happy birthday! I can see reasons for either way. I have to say I love celebrating birthdays (mine included). Whens yours?-Everyday Is Somebodys Birthday
First things first. My birthday is in the wonderful month of May, full of flowers and graduations and school closings and, icing on the cake, Mothers Day. May is named for Maia (meaning "the great one"), a mountain nymph (one of the seven Pleiades), the goddess of spring, parent with Zeus (Jupiter) of Hermes (Mercury).To bring this thing really down home, Mercury in copper (maybe with a little tin in it to make bronze) was on top of Union Station in Nashville. He toppled off in a storm in 1951. BUT, you pagans neednt worry because over at the Parthenon they put up a huge (41 feet, 10 inches tall) pagan image -- Mercurys cousin Athena (she sprang from the head of his father; perhaps cousin covers this) and theres another smaller statue of Mercury (in steel this time) back on the station. The gods are humming in Music City all right.
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