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Letters: Guns and Kiwis don't mix

February 03, 2013

Re "GOP bill proposes arming teachers," Jan. 31

Following the 9/11 attacks, pilots were allowed to carry guns in the cockpit. Now some California Republicans want teachers to be armed. Who is next? Have we become totally unhinged?

In New Zealand, even police officers usually don't carry guns. They know arming themselves encourages would-be criminals to do likewise. New Zealand has more sheep than people, and we have almost as many guns as people. Maybe the Kiwis know something we don't.

David Amitai

Los Angeles

Attempting to vilify the idea of teachers carrying firearms, some have conjured images of the Old West. I would like to paint another picture, one of quiet professionals.

The decision to carry a firearm is also one to take charge of one's own safety and, by proximity, the safety of others. It includes the decision to train, whether required by law or not. Modern firearms training emphasizes public safety and places the use of a firearm as a last resort.

When the decision has been made to use a gun, the goal is swift and decisive action with as close to a guaranteed positive outcome as possible. Otherwise, escape is the best decision. With thorough preparation, concealed carry permit holders offer an added level of protection to the community that most are never aware of.

Eric Pope

Needles, Calif.

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