Now is time for Congress to address gun violence

Now is time for Congress to address gun violence

Every time there is a shooting in a school, a cinema or in Las Vegas at a concert, all we hear from Congress and the president is this is not the time to talk about any type of gun control. When will be the time? How many people have to die before you finally do something? Is the money the NRA throws into your campaign funds worth more lives ended?

I don’t think it’s that hard to ban any automatic gun sales to anyone in the U.S. except for the military to use in a war. There is no reason these guns are so easy to obtain. No sales online or no sales in person to any single person. If you are caught doing so, you will go to jail and all your weapons will be destroyed.

Stop the sale of ghost guns. Just because it’s the parts – not the gun – doesn’t make it acceptable as a sale. The same for the bump stock that makes a gun automatic. These should be banned immediately.

Any automatic weapons found during a raid should be fixed and destroyed so they are incapable of shooting if stolen from the police storage area.

Anyone owning one should realize those type of guns are not for hunters. If you need an automatic or semi-automatic gun to hunt you shouldn’t have a license to hunt.

We can discuss this to death, but all it does is prolong the agony to the families who have lost their loved ones and for those who will lose one in the future because Congress doesn’t act. There should be no one against banning them. If they do, then money is more important than lives.

If there were no lobbyist putting money in your pocket they can’t sway you to keep voting against gun control.

Do the right thing before another person is killed in a senseless shooting in a school or public building. Stand up and do the right thing by voting now – not later. This is the time to talk about it and to make your words count by voting for a strict gun control bill.

Darlene Torday, Berlin Center

Where’s ‘justice for all’ in Danny Lee Hill case?

If Danny Lee Hill will not be executed for the torture and murder of 12-year-old Raymond Fife in 1985, “justice for all” makes better sense being named “Hill’s way pays.”

I continue to wonder how Danny Lee Hill had the knowledge to diagnose himself as mentally retarded. To my knowledge, doctors who practice and treat the mentally ill gain their knowledge by years of attending medical school.

While I believe all people are created by God and all are God’s children born with good and pure souls, I also believe anyone capable of committing an inhumane act against another person forfeits his or her humanity and soul.

If what Raymond Fife and his loved ones received is “justice for all,” then sadly the price and value for human life is going bankrupt.

Mary Lou Jurina, Youngstown

W. Branch prayer backers ignore minority rights

The turmoil in the West Branch Schools says more about our education systems than it does about prayer.

A recent Vindicator story uses phrases such as “the majority are for it” and “the majority of the school is Christian.”

If our schools were teaching basic Constitutional principles, everyone would understand that the United States is not, never has been, and will never be about the majority. Nowhere in the Constitution will you find the words democracy or Christianity.

America is a republic. The Bill of Rights was written to protect individual freedoms and liberty. Are those very students who demand Christian prayer at West Branch open to prayer rugs being laid toward Mecca every day at noon so their Muslim friends can practice their beliefs? Would you deny those students their right to freedom of religion because it’s not your faith?

The students at West Branch are too young to remember the civil-rights movement. There was a time when the majority ruled that black Americans were not allowed to attend my high school in Maryland. The majority decided that black Americans could not eat at the same restaurant as my family or wash their hands at the same sink. The majority is always larger and stronger but not always right.

Be very careful what you wish for. Someday, you may find yourself in the minority.

Don Johnson, Mineral Ridge

Land bank bulldozes rich history of Warren

The Trumbull Coun- ty Land Bank purports to “return vacant and abandoned properties to productive use”, a phrase that flashes valiantly on the first page of its website. Yet one stroll down Washington Avenue in Warren will leave you wondering whether we will have a city at all once they are through.

It is no secret that Warren has seen better days. And yet, I wonder whether pulling down so many historic homes in our city and replacing them with weeded lots and ugly logged fences is really the answer?

I ponder listlessly how a government agency, which should be more enlightened than the general populace and protect us from ourselves, is the forging force behind the erasure of everything that is special about our town. Oughtn’t they to know that in the 1700s, Warren was once the seat of the immense Connecticut Western Reserve, which now comprises Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, parts of Kentucky and Michigan?

Perhaps someone ought to tell them. Perhaps someone ought to inform them that homes they are destroying are over 100 years old, some as old as 130. But why should any of us have to tell them?

If you look at a map of Warren, all roads radiate outwards from Courthouse Square like the rays of a star. These road were not planned, but were riveted out in the 1700s by the wheels of a buggy and horse’s hooves. Some roads (like Mahoning) were beaten into hard dirt by the Moccasins of Native Americans before any buggy-wheel even touched them.

These same streets later teemed with some of the first (and arguably the finest) horseless carriages ever created in the world. The illustrious Packard Motorcar Co. patented several mechanisms taken as commonplace today in any horseless buggy, such as the steering wheel. And if the jockeys of these steel chariots ever decided to stir their cylinders after a sojourn in the surrounding countryside, chances are their paths would naturally converge right back to the track of Warren’s Circus Maximus.

Will these roads be the only clue left, at the end, that this place was once the Rome of a vast historical demarcation? Or will the government-funded Trumbull County Land Bank have its way with those too, digging them out and replacing them with weedy garden patches and repaving them with garishly-painted plywood?

Nicholas Kafantaris, Warren

World Spay Day nears

Feb. 27 is World Spay Day, a day to celebrate the importance of animal birth control and remind everyone to have their animal companions spayed or neutered. If you haven’t already, there’s no better time to have your animal family members “fixed.”

Spaying and neutering save lives by preventing more cats and dogs from being born only to be abandoned on the streets, euthanized in shelters, abused or neglected.

Sterilizing even one animal makes a huge difference: Just one female dog and her descendants can produce 67,000 puppies in six years, and one female cat and her offspring can lead to 370,000 descendants in seven years. Every new animal who is born either takes away a chance at a home from an animal waiting in a shelter or will end up homeless herself.

Please call 1-800-248-SPAY to find the nearest low-cost spay/neuter clinic. To learn more, visit

Lindsay Pollard-Post, Norfolk, Va.

Lindsay Pollard-Post is with the PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) Foundation.