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Monday, March 25 , 2019, 12:32 pm | A Few Clouds 61º


Letter to the Editor: Guns Pose Threat to Democracy

It’s a normal day at the coffee shop. People are sipping coffee, talking on cell phones, using their iPods or Blackberries, and working on their laptops. A group of guys stroll in with guns visibly in holsters strapped to their sides. The people using their 21st-century technologies look up from their laptops and are bewildered, suddenly confronted with a scene from the wild, wild west.

The problem may sound amusing, but it’s deadly serious. The political right perceived an opportunity to expand its base by reaching into the insurrectionist community and gun rights enthusiasts. Along with the tea party confusion and the angry town halls, perhaps millions of misinformed Americans erroneously believe our democratically elected president is a socialist, that he wasn’t born here, that he is a Muslim and his administration is “an oppressive, totalitarian government” — and their guns enable them to do something about it.

Insurrection: the act of organized opposition or revolt against civil authority or a constituted government.

Insurrectionists claim that unfettered access to guns is necessary to keep people free. When a militant minority’s concept of freedom has the potential to endanger or inflame through the use of irrational anger along with the threat of gun violence, the rest of the people are at risk.

Are we, the general public, paying attention to what is really going on here? If you label these people as a minority fringe group, you do so at America’s peril. Their use of force threatens our nation’s political equality.

Hear a national expert, Josh Horwitz, co-author of Guns, Democracy, and the Insurrectionist Idea on May 16 at the Coalition Against Gun Violence’s 15th annual luncheon. Call 805.564.6803 for more information.

Toni Wellen

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