Letter - Take pledge to ask simple question

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Did you know one in three homes in the United States with kids has guns? Many unlocked and loaded.

June 21 is National ASK day. Please make a pledge to ASK this lifesaving question.

“Is there an unlocked gun where my child plays?”

Carlos Acevedo

Walla Walla

Comments

namvet60 3 months, 2 weeks ago

Do you: Take your children to a Waterpark - "bad" - body fluids and germs - Do you let your children play video games - "bad" - "could" lead to violence - Do you let them walk down the sidewalk - "bad" - toxic auto exhaust and fumes - Do you take them to a playground - "bad" - playground equipment dangerous - Do you take them to the Park - "bad" - possible second-hand smoke and venomous insects - Do you let them ride bikes - "bad" - these roads are dangerous - Do you let them ride in a car - "bad" - people even die wearing restraints - etc. - etc. . . . . . . . . . Just asking?

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pdywgn 3 months, 2 weeks ago

How could anybody possibly come up with 1 in 3 homes has a gun in it? Number of legally owned firearms compared to residences? Under this assumption based on the amount of firearms I own. I own somewhere in the vicinity of 30 properties and some of them have children in them that I am not aware of. That said: I'm assuming you are addressing homes with a loaded firearm on the coffee table, etc. Those homes also tend to have drugs within reach as well and a current or future felon living in the residence. I've carried a fully loaded firearm around my kids, nieces, etc. for years it has a full magazine, spare and one in the chamber. The stairs were a bigger threat to them.

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

So namvet60 and pdywgn see no reason whatsoever to remove loaded, unsecured and unsupervised guns (the topic of this letter) from areas in which children play? I'm not sure even the NRA would agree with that position.

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namvet60 3 months, 2 weeks ago

So NewinWW - I state numerous areas that children venture to with some hazards and all of a sudden I'm condoning little children playing with weapons.

This parsing and innuendos are a little bit much so maybe a little comprehension on your part might be in order?

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

I have really good comprehension.

In reply to the OP's simple request that people be aware of unsupervised loaded guns in areas where children play, you listed a series of everyday things that might be harmful to children - apparently equating walking down a sidewalk and breathing exhaust fumes to children having access to unattended, loaded weapons. (And if that wasn't your point, why did you create that inane list of "hazards?")

For my part, a typical 100-120 grain 9 mm bullet moving at a typical 1,000 fps, is likely to do more - and more immediate - harm to a child than walking along a street, going to a water park or any of the other silly counter-examples you dreamed up.

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namvet60 3 months, 2 weeks ago

OK Mister - let's see if you can wrap your comprehension around just one item on my inane list:

http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Playground-Injuries/playgroundinjuries-factsheet.htm

The majority of those items on that list have a larger number of severe injuries or deaths in comparison. As I stated your parsing and innuendos are ignorant to say the least.

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

Wow! 14.7 deaths by playground equipment/year from 1990 to 2000 for the entire US.

And (you claim) that wasn't even the worst of your examples (although I don't understand why you wouldn't cite the death rates for the more severe risks on your list).

I'm guessing that you and I both know that your initial post was silly, that each of your responses have been silly; and now you're resorting to "OK Mister" sort of language and fairly weak attempts to be insulting because you know you're just being silly.

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namvet60 3 months, 2 weeks ago

"Parsing and Innuendos" - you have them down pat.

Inside original post: "Do you take them to a playground - "bad" - playground equipment dangerous" - was death mentioned? No. Was death mentioned in the letter to the editor? No.

For scurrilous comments - you get the gold star . . . . . . . . . . .

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

I suggest you look up the meanings of "parsing" and "innuendo" so you can start using them properly.

In fact add in "scurrilous" as that seems to escape you too.

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namvet60 3 months, 2 weeks ago

Yup Yup - I can do that!

If your confused try Google . . . . . . . . . . .

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pdywgn 3 months, 2 weeks ago

First off I'm not a member of the NRA. I question the stats at the beginning of Carlos's letter as well as the statement that many are unlocked and loaded. I don't buy the statement that MANY are unlocked and loaded. If you had bothered to read what I wrote I was stating more that there were a few. I was also indicating that those who would leave a loaded firearm unsecured around children are the same people that shouldn't be breeding children to begin with and don't bother reading the paper so this just ends up being another Acevedo rant.

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

I'm pretty sure this is a waste of time - but here goes.

I suspect there may be more than a few grandparents out there who, while normally not having children in their home, do have grandchildren visit from time-to-time.

I'd further guess that more than a few of those grandparents keep a loaded, unlocked weapon around for protection.

Finally, I'd hope that if they do, they secure the weapon while the grandchildren are visiting.

You can question the statistics, dislike Acevedo, and make various assumptions about who should and should not be breeding - nonetheless, it's not a bad idea to ask yourself if you keep a loaded weapon in your house if kids in your house might have access to it.

I have no idea why this controversial.

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PearlY 3 months, 2 weeks ago

I, too, question Carlos's claim that there are "many" homes with guns and children where guns are left loaded and unlocked.

But one is all it takes, so I see nothing wrong with asking. I wonder if Carlos and NewInWW would join me in urging our schools to adopt the NRA's widely acclaimed Eddie Eagle campaign to educate children about what to do (and not do) around guns. Kids manage to learn at pretty early ages not to stick things in electrical outlets, put their hands on the hot stove, etc., because we make it a point to teach such precautions. Precautions around guns should be taught, as well.

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NewInWW 3 months, 2 weeks ago

I have no issue with teaching children gun safety. That said, any NRA program strikes me as asking Mao to teach economics.

Safety? Sure. Gun culture? No thanks. I'd rather teach children how to speak in tongues while handling venomous snakes - which, as I think about it, isn't a bad analogy.

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

Do you actually know anything about the Eddie Eagle program, or is it just your bigotry speaking? Never mind. The answer is obvious.

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

In fact, pure unadulterated bigotry.

That said, I would similarly oppose programs sponsored by Al Qaeda or the KKK. Sometimes it's hard to separate the message from the messenger.

So far as I'm concerned, the NRA falls into that same general category.

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namvet60 3 months, 1 week ago

NewinWW - you probably believe that Jane Fonda should be listed in the Elder Statesman Journal or probably be nominated for a Pulitzer Prize?

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

And you probably can't tell the difference between a headache and a decapitation, either.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

The Eddie Eagle NRA "teachings" about guns is like asking Pepsi to teach about good eating habits at lunch in schools!

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namvet60 3 months, 1 week ago

paco - your either a habitual barnyard instigator or the utmost clueless individual that ever wore a pair of huaraches. Pathetic . . . .

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

Paco, I invite you - in fact, I dare you - to read about the program and then tell me exactly what part of it you find objectionable. You can find basic information about it here: http://eddieeagle.nra.org/frequently-asked-questions.aspx

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

I'm not Paco, but the program doesn't seem to be terribly effective:

"Four of 15 children in the BST group required the additional training session, whereas 13 of 15 children in the Eddie Eagle group required the training session. The results of the second in situ assessment showed that all 4 children in the BST group learned the skills. In addition, 11 of 13 children in the Eddie Eagle group performed the skills in the second in situ assessment. These findings showed that 1 in situ training session with BST was effective in teaching the safety skills for all except 2 children."

BST is Behavioral Skills Training and the "in situ" assessment was, essentially, a test of skills resulting from the initial training.

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/114/3/e294.full.pdf

I doubt PearlY, pdywgn, or any of the other NRA card carrying folks will read that far, but 13 of 15 children in the Eddie Eagle program failed the initial test, and 11 of those 13 passed after receiving the BST training. Four of 15 children who received the BST training failed the initial test, and all of them passed after the addiitonal training.

It turns out that the Eddie Eagle trained children know the right answers when asked what they would do if they found a gun, but they don't act on their training, instead they end up picking up the gun.

So far as I can tell, the NRA is the only organization which seems to think the Eddie Eagle program is effective, and that is based on taking credit for the national drop in child related accidental gun deaths (which by the NRA's own admission were already dropping before the Eddie Eagle Program was adopted), and limited anecdotal evidence.

Finally, there's a widespread suspicion that the true intent of the Eddie Eagle program is to promote the acceptance of guns among very young children through the use of an innocuous cartoon character.

So, PearlY, on Paco's behalf, I dare you to show us the academic, reviewed study that says the Eddie Eagle program is effective. With your research skills surely this challenge will be trivial for you, in fact, you'd think the NRA would have done such a study itself.

I'll save you a little time. The one Journal article cited on the NRA's self congratulatory webpage on the Eddie Eagle program (the Journal of Emergency Nursing) had this to say:

"Outcome measures on the effectiveness of the Eddie Eagle program are limited to anecdotal testimonials provided by adults who have reportedly witnessed a change in children’s behavior after completing the program and internal data collection. No peer evaluation has been reported to date."

So, have at it. Show us those citations!

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

The Eddie Eagle Program has nothing to do with handling firearms. It is a program that teaches children that if they come across an unattended firearm to stop, don't touch it and to find an adult. It isn't fool proof,b ut neither is only just making sure your guns aren't available. Criminals tend to ditch firearms while eluding capture and sometimes those guns are later found in bushes, backyards after being thrown over a fence, parks and even on school grounds. I think it would be even more awesome if the grandson came up and told one of the grandparents that there was a gun in whatever location of the house he stumbled upon it rather then having a tragic outcome. I do find it interesting that a Doctor would make snide comments about educating children on a subject that could well save their life without bothering to look up the curriculum.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

No problem about teaching kids about how dangerous guns are, precisely because guns are inherently dangerous! Pdywgn doesn't know that there is a substantial research done about this subject. In more than 95% of the cases of children from 3 to 10, after being taught about the stop, do not touch and call an adult lessons, those kids did touched, handle the gun, and did not call an adult. More over, to the contrary of what the video showed they denied ever touching the gun.

Pdywgn, if you have a 5 year old son or grandson, I already know you've taught them about how dangerous guns are. Good for you. You're a responsible gun owner. Please ask your neighbor if there will be an unsupervised loaded gun where your child will be playing! Why? Because GUNS ARE DANGEROUS! Please, please don't trust your 5 year old! If you do, you will be an irresponsible gun owner, and could be your worst nightmare!

About guns found in the forest? Well, that's a real red hearing...and Pdywgn knows it!

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

I meant to type red herring... not red hearing! Sorry!

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

Paco, I'm 95% sure you're lying about the "substantial research" showing that more than 95% of children, after being taught the Eddie Eagle program, do go ahead and handle the gun. But I don't doubt some kids did. Even knowing how to swim, some kids drown, so you are, I guess, against pool operators trying to teach kids to swim. After all, pool operators often LIKE swimming, so it might give the children the wrong impression, right?

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

Well, as usual, you're right. In the one actual peer reviewed study done on the Eddie Eagle program, only 87% of the Eddie Eagle trained children went ahead and picked up the gun - not the 95% Paco claimed, but a whole lot more than the "some kids" you suggested, unless "some" is roughly 7/8ths of all.

What's interesting to me is that all of the gung-ho Eddie Eagle advocates here seem to think it's the child's responsibility to keep itself safe, rather than asking gun owners to make sure any loaded guns they have are secured if they might be found by children.

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

If you read the study more carefully, you'd find you are wrong. Based on their scoring system, all we can tell is that most (more than 50%- but the authors won't tell us how many) of the children did NOT pick up the gun. The 87% you're talking about didn't do the whole program - leave the area, tell an adult. Although it would be best to leave the area and tell an adult, a child will not shoot anybody if he/she doesn't touch the gun.

Who said "it's the child's responsibility to keep itself safe" rather than gun owners' responsibility to keep loaded guns out of the hands of kids? I certainly didn't and I didn't see anybody else do it either.

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

Oh, so it's Gung-ho Eddie Eagle advocates. 13% didn't touch the gun and if it was dumped in the back yard by the local hood rat at least the attempt was made to keep the child safe. We teach kids how to cross the street, but some still get hit. I watched the report on one of the major networks a few years ago. The kids were placed in a room with the gun on a table and a chair in an otherwise empty room with absolutely no other stimuli until they picked up the gun. Most of the kids abstained for 15 to 30 minutes, for a 6or7 year old that was probably the equivelant of sitting for three hours. The option of getting an adult was taken away, since it was made clear to the kids that the adult knew the gun was there before the adult left them in the room.

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

You missed the part where 87% of the kids who received alternate training didn't touch the gun. That tells me there's something seriously deficient in the NRA program.

In any other area, most of you defending the NRA program would find an 87% success rate a compelling reason to change approaches when compared to a 13% success rate unless, of course, the NRA tells you that 13% is really, really good, as they have.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

I find it incredibly irresponsible that the NRA has the audacity to entice parents to trust their children after the devastating failure of this Eddie Eagle farce. Pearl, even 87% failure is substantially valid and sensitive using any statically analysis you wish.

For the NRA, rather than getting rid of this incredibly dangerous piece of garbage, to keep at it, is the most irresponsible "propaganda" conceived by its leadership. At least, Eddie Eagle should be accompanied by encouraging parents not to trust their kid and keep guns stored safely.

Responsible parents should ASK if there are loaded weapon where their children play.

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

Sorry, that should have been "you missed the part where 73% of the kids who received alternate training didn't touch the gun." I was mixing up my percentages.

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

I did not say the 13% was good results. I saw the episode as well and it was incrdibly skewed. I could have gotten the same results with a bowl of lima beans sitting on a table in a room devoid of any other stimuli and given enough time I could have had every one of those kids trying at least one lima bean. A more interesting study would be to have the firearm and a cool toy to see if there is any type of propensity toward the gun. I would venture the Gameboy would win.

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

I did not say the 13% was good results. I saw the episode as well and it was incredibly skewed. I could have gotten the same results with a bowl of lima beans sitting on a table in a room devoid of any other stimuli and given enough time I could have had every one of those kids trying at least one lima bean. A more interesting study would be to have the firearm and a cool toy to see if there is any type of propensity toward the gun. I would venture the Gameboy would win.

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

NewinWW- If you had bothered to read the entire article covering BST and Eddie Eagle the experiment was ruled inconclusive in younger children other then the findings that learning at the younger levels performed better when it is situationally based rather then recited. All could recite, but didn't learn much from that. It also concluded that both were fine programs that appeared very affective after some remedial reinforcement and scenerio based training. That was from the Journal of Pediatrics. They further reiterate what has already been said: If you are not in physical control of the weapon, secure it.

I AM NOT A MEMBER OF THE NRA!!!

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

If you're not a member of the NRA, you should join. It's not perfect, but it's better than leaving the 2nd Amendment to the tender mercies of folks like NewInWW. The 1st Freedom Magazine is worth the price of membership just by itself.

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

I read the APA article. It showed that the "in situ" training the children were offered after the two other approaches, though more labor-intensive, is valuable, although they acknowledge long-term retention of the lesson is unknown. Notably, the study doesn't tell us how many of the children touched the gun. It tells us that most did not follow the full set of instructions (leave the area, call an adult) but the scoring shows that both the Eddie Eagle group AND the control group were comprised of children who mostly did NOT touch the gun. So much for Paco's lie.

There are a number of methodological problems with the study that make me wonder how valid it is. It was a small sample (only 36 children divided between three groups) all drawn from a single childcare facility. There is no information provided on the children's backgrounds with firearms (whether there are firearms in their homes, what other instruction they've been given on gun safety, etc.), their overall level of compliance with instruction, etc. There's also substantial evidence of bias in the study. But social science studies these days are rife with these problems. For the main theme of the study - that children of that age learn best by incorporating what they've learned into active practice - I think it's worthwhile, and I would hope that the NRA has adopted some of these findings into its program.

That being said, how much of a problem are we talking about, really? (The fact that the study studiously avoids addressing this honestly is one reason I say it's biased.)

According to the CDC data for the 10 year period ending with (and including) 2011, the chance that a child will die from a gun accident caused by ANYONE (that child, another child, or an adult) from birth to age 10 is (drumroll):

One in 1.2 million.

During that time, 324 children under 10 years old died from firearm accidents. Not 324 per year, 324 total, or about 32 per year.

Comparatively, the chances were twice as high that child would die from accidental poisoning, 10 times higher from a residential fire, 20 times higher from accidental drowning, 31 times higher from accidental suffocation, 39 times higher from transportation related accidents, and, in fact, 26 times higher from intentional violence - 88% of which is NOT committed with a firearm. Pediatricians counsel against keeping any gun in the house and promote the strictest possible gun control to keep children safe from guns, but adverse medical effects killed more children than gun accidents - 483 versus 324.

If, indeed, one out of three households with children have guns, then clearly, the overwhelming majority of those gun owners are handling them responsibly.

And if we could reduce the rate at which people (mostly parents) murder infants before age 1 by just 20%, we'd save twice as many children as if we could wave a magic wand and eliminate gun accidents among children under 10.

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NewInWW 3 months, 1 week ago

So, taking the shortcut around that very large barn you constructed (or was it a red herring storage shed?) - no studies showing that the Eddie Eagle program is effective.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

Moreover, it is unconscionable for the NRA to project the responsibility rather on parents, but on children for their safety...with Guns? "Little guy, I take responsibility for your diet, your curfew, your transportation to school and soccer games, but I trust you not to touch unattended guns and to call an adult" Please do not trust children and keep guns secured and locked with the key in your possession at all times. Or better....parents of children, do you really need a gun?

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

Turns out I had bought into some of the gun-ban crowds propaganda. Having now learned that gun accidents from ALL sources, including adults, are the cause of less than one-half of one-percent of the accidental deaths of children under 10, I no longer care enough about whether Eddie Eagle has any effect on children's behavior to do the research. Like the DARE program, most sex education, many of the "Bad Touch" sex abuse prevention programs, etc., Eddie Eagle seems designed to make a bunch of adults feel better. In that respect, it's effective, albeit only along political lines.

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VampireNinja 3 months, 1 week ago

Is it so hard to realize for some people that the NRA isn't some 5th column, monolithic Illuminati cadre of despots seeking power to undermine our society and government but a group comprised of everyday citizens who have seen the need to defend their natural right to bear arms which, as stated in the Bill of Rights, shouldn't need to be defended at all? And no, I'm not a member...but seeing the way the 2nd Amendment is constantly and illegally attacked and marginalized by both government and our fickle society, I'm revisiting the reasoning as to why I'm not.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

The problem is not the NRA, but its leadership and the gun industry. The overwhelming majority of the NRA leadership is in favor of reasonable universal background checks. The second amendment is the law, and and all of us need to respect it, period. Still the second amendment is not a free for all, permissive law that allows all kind of weapons for everyone. Check Hellers's Supreme Court decision!

Vampire, you seem to be a fairly reasonable guy. Please do join the NRA! They need sensible people like you!

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

Is that the difference between a liberal and a conservative, Paco? You "respect" the Second Amendment because it's the law. How tolerant of you. No doubt you do the same for freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom from arbitrary searches and seizures.

I don't really care whether YOU "respect" these rights. I expect and demand that MY GOVERNMENT respect the 2nd Amendment, and the rest, because they are our basic rights as human beings. The Bill of Rights isn't there to tell US what to do; it's there to tell the GOVERNMENT what it must NOT do.

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PearlY 3 months, 1 week ago

VampireNinja, the NRA is far from perfect, but liberals hate it to distraction (far, far worse than they hate Al Qaeda, serial killers on death row, or the drug cartels) for a reason: It is effective in thwarting many of their power-grabs. So I'm glad you're revisiting whatever your reasons might have been for remaining a non-member.

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chicoli 3 months, 1 week ago

Not true! We don't hate the NRA members. We do hate the disingenuousness of the NRA leadership as we believe they are in cahoot with the gun industry to perpetuate the insatiable, irresponsible appetite for guns and bullets. The majority of my friends are sensible NRA members.

But when Pearl becomes unglued she has the tendency to blast gratuitous insults that put in question the integrity of people. She hops along on her high horse and hijacks the Constitution, mostly the Bill of Rights, which is "there to protect"... the republicans?

If Pearl EXPEXTS and DEMANDS that her Government respect her rights, this is indeed a universal sentiment cherished by all Americans. These expectations and demands must be voiced within democratic means, and not by the Ted Bundy Ranch means!

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pdywgn 3 months, 1 week ago

Ted Bundy was a serial killer. Clyve Bundy is a rancher. You were almost right in the statement that the Bill of Rights is there to protect the REPUBLIC, not the Republican. This Country was founded as a Republic, not a democracy. Hence the line in the Pledge of Allegiance (and to the Republic for which it stands)

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