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Advertising by the NRA

September 18, 1987

I am compelled to express my dismay at the decision by The Times to publish the advertisement (Metro, Sept. 10) for the National Rifle Assn. Given your editorial policy of not accepting advertising for something as innocuous as adult films, I find it most curious that an inflammatory message advocating individual violence would be published.

The NRA advertisement featured a photo of a man sprawled on a sidewalk being bludgeoned by a thug with a baseball bat. The text of the advertisement questioned, "Why can't a policeman be there when you need him?" The NRA responds that the police are outnumbered by the criminals, and that we, as individuals, must be responsible for our own protection. The NRA response: handgun ownership, handgun use.

Increased accessibility to handguns seems an illogical solution to crime and violence. Indeed, a defensible body of evidence exists that ready access to handguns actually promotes violence.

The NRA message is clear--take the law into your own hands. This position is decidely more threatening than thugs with baseball bats. We are a violent culture with a violent heritage. This needs to be checked, not encouraged.

ROBERT B. MEADOWS

Irvine

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