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Letters to the Editor - Jan. 22

January 21, 2011

Arizona needed more guns, not less

To the editor:


We know that Jared Lee Loughner, the Tucson shooter, was armed with a 9mm Glock 19 semiautomatic pistol, a slightly smaller version of the Glock 17. But did you know that his was not the only gun there that day?

Twenty-four year old Joe Zamudio was in a nearby Walgreens when the shooting started. As soon as he heard the shots, he ran out.

Outside, a man said, “Shooter. Shooter. Get down.”

Instead, Zamudio ran toward the shots. “I was a little bit more prepared to do some good than maybe somebody else would have been.”

Why? Because Zamudio legally carries a 9mm semiautomatic pistol everywhere he goes.

“I had my hand on the butt of my gun,” he said. If they hadn’t grabbed him and he was still moving, I would have shot him.”

There is an old saying, “Don’t bring a knife to a gunfight.” Zamudio brought a gun to the Tucson gunfight. He didn’t need to use it this time. The next time, he might.

If there is a next time, those in harm’s way will be glad to see Joe Zamudio, or somebody like him, running in their direction.

If you come under attack in Maryland, however, don’t expect someone like Joe Zamudio to come running to your aid. Unlike Arizona, it is almost impossible to get a handgun carry permit in Maryland. Marylanders are only allowed to bring a pocketknife to a gunfight.

In case you are wondering, annual firearm murders in Arizona — where you don’t need a permit to open carry and where anyone who can pass a background check can get a permit to carry concealed — are 3.04 per 100,000 population. In Maryland, the figure is double that — 6.06 per 100,000 population.

G.F. Miller
Hagerstown



Obama must keep pledge on whaling

To the editor:

Right now the Japanese whaling fleet is in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary hunting whales. This is the fourth time the Japanese have gone to the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary since President Obama made the statement that, “Allowing Japan to continue commercial whaling is unacceptable.”

According to a recent poll, 83 percent of Americans want the president to stand by his pledge to strengthen the ban on commercial whaling.

President Obama must use all the diplomatic tools available to him to reform the International Whaling Commission and stop the Japanese from whaling in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary. These creatures are critical to our marine ecosystem.

Briana Wagner
Hagerstown

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