* Police departments selling guns for profit ("O.C. Police Take Heat for Selling Seized Guns," Feb. 25) is not only the ultimate in rationalization, it's the ultimate insult to law-abiding citizens.
While the citizenry is coming up with creative, albeit desperate, ways to remove guns from the streets, the Orange and Huntington Beach police departments sell them for eventual redistribution back to where they came.
If there was one last chance/hope we had on the street-gun issue, it should have been the leaders of the brave men and women who have to wear a bulletproof vest under their clothes just to go to work! It's a new level of insanity.
Personally, I liked it better when you could find a cop at a doughnut shop instead of making deals for profit with private arms dealers.
N. DOUGLAS MAZZA
* Why don't the police open a retail gun shop to sell the guns they confiscate? Eliminate the middleman and make lots more money for city coffers.
* Oh, it does my heart good to read that Southern California's elected officials and city managers are so up to doing their duty as those in Northern California. Let's take a look at what yours have recently accomplished.
According to "O.C. Police Take Heat for Selling Seized Guns," they are managing to step in and attempt to halt our law enforcement agencies from raising badly needed budget funds to combat crime! Boy, they will just do anything to interfere with law enforcement's ability to protect us private citizens!
No matter that they have now created enough pressure to force a legitimate businessman to close his doors. A businessman who has legally assisted these agencies in returning over $10 million to the public coffers to help combat crime!
And that doesn't count the sales tax and state registration fees collected when this product is legitimately resold through licensed channels to a law-abiding consumer! They should be so proud of themselves!
And, these are the same people who will be coming to you and me for more taxes because they can find tax money to earmark for combatting crime.
A special note to Santa Ana Councilman Ted R. Moreno. You had better also stop your (city's) practice of selling confiscated vehicles from drug dealers. If you look at recent studies published in this very same paper, your kids have a much better chance of being run over by one of those vehicles. And those confiscated and recovered bicycles: Why, your child has an extremely good chance of being injured by one of those terrible evil products.
A simple question. Have any of you ever read the 1968 United States Gun Control Act? When will this lunacy end? When will my intelligence ever be safe from insult by these people and your newspaper?
* Who are the people turning in guns at the Anaheim Pond, Aamco transmission or any other guns for goodies exchanges? By all accounts, gangbangers and crooks are not filling the lines.
It is ironic that at the same time that these guns for goodies programs are going on nationwide, there are law enforcement agencies selling confiscated firearms that were in fact taken from--you guessed it--gangbangers and crooks!
Politicians defend this policy as a fiscal necessity and a legal practice. Some law enforcement officials say: "It is not like you are adding to the supply by selling confiscated weapons." This is political hypocrisy and ignores ethical as well as moral issues.
Is it ethical to defend this practice as legal while at the same time seeking to outlaw currently legal sales of other types of weapons? Is it moral to ignore the fact that a police officer has already risked his or her life once to take these guns off our streets?
This policy of selling cheap, secondhand guns by cities and law enforcement agencies must be halted immediately. Weapons stockpiled should not be sold.
It is time to shed some light in this hypocritical practice and demand that all cities and law enforcement agencies nationwide get out of the business of adding to the supply of guns on our streets.
JOHN M. RAYA