"You and I are on opposite sides of the gun debate, you won’t convince me that they should all be scrapped and I won’t convince you that decent folks should be allowed to have ’em (Hoppe, “Video Games or Guns,” Dec. 20-27).

That said, I would hope you are objective and honest enough to entertain the idea that your article may contain some inaccuracies.

First, “Our police CAN limit the carrying of concealed handguns” — it is flat against the law to carry a concealed handgun without a permit, and in fact against the law to carry a handgun in the open without a permit. These permits are issued by the State Police and local law enforcement official (sheriff or chief of police) only after a check of local and federal computer records, and in some cases a personal interview. Suffice it to say you may have no record of crime, nuttiness or the like to have a permit issued. They are periodically renewed, with record checks and so forth.

Second, minors are not allowed to purchase or possess handguns, period. Do we see kids with guns every day? Sure do, and they are breaking this law and likely many more.

Third, every sale of a handgun is cleared through the federal law enforcement network at present. Previously, you could either possess a valid concealed carry permit or wait seven days while the records were subjected to a more laborious check.

I have purchased handguns at gun shows, and the procedures are identical to buying from a licensed dealer in his shop. Why, because to sell guns at a gun show you must be a licensed dealer.

May be easier to illegally obtain a firearm than a driver’s license, due to a lack of a black market for driver’s licenses outside the college campus.

Do I want firearms ownership limited to law-abiding citizens? Sure do, and I’m certain we agree on that count. Let’s just not tell the already panicked public that guns are not subject to any control.

Keep writing from the gut, it’s a good thing. Please check your statements for reality, maybe check with a cop or lawyer before telling your public what a mess we have.

Rick Nelson




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