Rebuttal, J. Cimino: Maine people won't forget

The editorial board of the Sun Journal has taken political correctness to a new level (editorial, March 31). You pat yourself on the back for several predictions which fall in line with Puxatawney Phil's prediction that winter was over 2 months ago.

The American people have not changed their opinion on firearms, despite biased news articles and anti-gun zealots such as Bloomberg and Soros spending untold millions to sell out the Second Amendment.

When the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearm agents visit unannounced to federal firearms licensees to review procedures and inventory, serial numbered entries are checked against inventory of firearms on hand. The licensee would be in violation of federal law if any items are unaccounted for.

Your uncalled for remark that dealers could sell guns under the table is totally without merit and completely false and insulting to legitimate businesses.

If you truly want accurate reporting, Rex Rhoades should get off his butt and visit my shop, or any other licensed firearms business, and ask questions as to how much government regulation is already in place to protect the public.

As for your diatribe on the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms director, the Sun Journal must have selective amnesia. Have you forgotten "fast and furious?" The ATF director oversaw gun walking — a process in which guns were sold to criminals. Those directives resulted in the death of a U.S. border agent and many Mexicans caught in the crossfire of illegal weapons.

The U.S. Congress has, rightfully, held up appointments until all the facts are known.

The Sun Journal cites how many deaths occur due to gun violence, but does not mention the estimated 2.5 million times yearly guns were used in defense against a confrontation with a criminal (source: Survey by Gary Kleck, Ph.D., and Marc Gertz, 1993).

As for President Obama's ideas, such as supporting the United Nations treaty on guns, that is nothing but a smokescreen to back-end the degradation of the U.S. Constitution.

Recently, Maine Sen. Angus King voted to support that U.N. treaty. On Oct. 23, 2012, the Sun Journal endorsed King.

Maine people won't forget.

Joseph F. Cimino, Poland Spring

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PAUL MATTSON's picture

Brilliant letter and I concur

Brilliant letter and I concur 100%. Oh, as a subscriber to the Sun Urinal for 30 years I cancelled our subscription for good.

 's picture

sentiment

The American people on guns: http://goo.gl/hrDAT
You need more news sources.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

What would you recommend,

What would you recommend, WickiLeaks?

 's picture

You need to read the Constitution

We are a Constitutional Republic. The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land, not public opinion polls. It doesn't matter if 99% of the people in the United States are in favor of gun-control, it would still be against the law.

 's picture

absolute

None of the rights granted in the constitution or bill of rights are absolute. Was the last assault weapons ban ruled unconstitutional by the folks we pay to make such judgments? Are you free to yell "FIRE!" in a theater? When were background checks ruled unconstitutional?

 's picture

Really?

First of all, Rights are not granted by the Constitution or by the government. Rights are retained by The People and enumerated in the Bill of Rights in order to underscore the fact that the government that is created by the Constitution exists to ensure the Rights of The People are protected.

The Declaration of Independence says: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that amoung these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness..."

An unalienable right is a right that is incapable of being repudiated or transferred to another.

Are you saying that no one has an absolute right to their Life? I find it interesting that the people who say there are no absolute rights use that statement to justity infringing on the rights of their fellow citizens.

The government has no authority to limit free speach because someone might yell "Fire" in a crowded theater. Nor does the government have the authority to prevent me from using my hands because I might make a fist and strike someone.

There were three different studies performed before, during and after the last so-called "assault weapons" ban, and they all came to the same conclusion; that the ban had no measurable effect on crime.

 's picture

absolute right to life

Please explain capital punishment to me. Isn't that taking away someone's absolute right to life?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Not if that individual did

Not if that individual did the same thing to others. An eye for an eye.
You're against capital punishment, but I'll bet dollars to donuts that you're in favor of abortion.

Jason Theriault's picture

I agreed with your letter till you went a bit nuts.

I agreed with you, Mr Cimino, right up until you started quoting the survey saying 2.5 million times guns were used against a confrontation.
1. That study didn't differentiate between police, military and civilian confrontations.
2.It oversampled the South and West, both pro gun areas of the country
3. Another survey conducted at the same time, the National Crime Victimization Survey, estimated 65,000 defensive gun uses.
4. The survey was from 1992.

And as for the UN gun treaty, it an Arms trafficking treaty. It even states in the preamble:
"Reaffirming the sovereign right of any State to regulate and control
conventional arms exclusively within its territory, pursuant to its own legal or
constitutional system,"

http://www.un.org/disarmament/ATT/docs/Draft_ATT_text_27_Mar_2013-E.pdf

BTW - Just an fyi - only 3 countries voted against it in the general assembly.
Iran
Syria
North Korea.

Let that sink in. You're throwing your lot in with them.

2.5 A Hot Button for Me.

Right on Jason. By the way mentioning the word "lot" reminds me of someone. Bringing the 2.5 million number into any discussion tells me I'd be wasting my time with this, but I'll add my piece. Most people propagate that information from "More guns .... less Crime" by the infamous Mr John Lott Jr. Anyone who reads the book, and not just the highlights and HIS conclusions but also the charts and figures he comes up with, should be able to come to a logical conclusion. It's pure theory based on junk science. His work has been disputed and will continue to be. I've had the distinction of having a personal discussion with him and I'm sure he's working on another book. Maybe he'll now have a figure of 4 million. Like you said Jason, this figure is 20 YEARS OLD! Done by phone surveys, spotty data and with the general understanding, so we're led to believe, that no gun owner likes to advertise whether he had a gun or not. Maybe there's 2.5 million or 65,000 that love to brag? I doubt even the lower number and is likely bogus but no one can prove it either way. No facts to back it up. Let go of it people! Go on to something more meaningful that can be debated or discussed. I hate theories, they have meaning to only the one/ones that created it.

 's picture

There have been many studies...

There have been many studies that have tried to estimate the number of times guns are used defensively, and the numbers vary. The fact remains that people DO use them to defend themselves daily, but those statistics are generally overlooked.

It is rather a moot point to throw statistics around. The fact remains, the supreme law of the land says the the people have a right to keep and bear arms. A right that is protected by the 2nd Amendment. A right that existed prior to the formation of this government.

"Resistance to sudden violence, for the preservation not only of my person, my limbs, and life, but of my property, is an indisputable right of nature which I have never surrendered to the public by the compact of society, and which perhaps, I could not surrender if I would." -- John Adams, Boston Gazette, Sept. 5, 1763,reprinted in 3 The Works of John Adams 438 (Charles F. Adams ed., 1851)

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." -- Jefferson's "Commonplace Book," 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764

Makes for good reading as it pertains to aound the 18th century.

However, in this 21st century we're encountering things most people never would have imagined. To apply that, totally, would be a disservice to our society as a whole. How about a suggestion to remove all restrictions and let people do as they wish, anywhere, anytime in this country? Can any reasonable person think that could work?
John Adams said "and which PERHAPS", I could not surrender. Jefferson said "disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes", but we're really not too sure who "they" really encompass.
The 2nd amendment is not absolute, nor should it ever be, no matter whose interpretation.

 's picture

Not so different

We face the same dangers in our day as they did in theirs.

It is a disservice to our society to think otherwise. The point Adams was trying to make is that he is ultimately responsible for his own safety. "Perhaps" in this sentence means "I doubt I could give it up even if I wanted to." His point is that the Right to self defense is unalienable, i.e. not something that can be relinquished or transfered to someone else.

You miss Jefferson's point. It is not that we can be sure of who the criminals are. The point he is trying to make is you don't solve the violence problem by disarming the good guys, all you do is take away their ability to defend themselves from violent criminals.

And that is why gun-control is so immoral.

Right up until the 1960's the only gun-control laws on the books were a bunch of "Jim Crow" laws that were enacted in the south to prevent black folks from owning firearms. If gun-control works, why do the cities with the strictest gun-control also have the largest number of gun related homicides?

Never heard heard gun-control being immoral used before but ...

We all have our opinions. I suspect your trying to interpret both people's words and thoughts and scholars have a difficult time. My only response to your question, and to many others, is a question back, and I do despise questions answered with a question, but it needs to be asked. What if there were no gun-control whatsoever in New York city or in Chicago for instance? If you think that crime and violence will drop I then suppose that removing the speed limits on our roads and highway could be a way lower the accidents and fatalities on our roads and highways. Before you begin to mention the fact "but self defense is a "right", try seeing where my logic is headed. Your question, in itself, is just NOT a valid question, I don't care how many times you and others ask it.

Jason Theriault's picture

My only problem

First off, I agree with you on the statistics. I think that DGUs(defensive gun use) are rather hard thing to measure accurately.

Now as far as Adams and Jefferson, I think this is a far different country than those men founded. They were both not in favor of a standing army. And Adam's passed the alien and sedition acts. And both Adams and Jefferson used them. They were men with good ideas, but they were fallible, just like today.

Instead of tossing around quotes, post your reasons for or against, and lets argue them

 's picture

That just proves they are human.

I think the founders would be both amazed and discouraged with where we are today.

If you spend much time reading the debates from the founding era, there is one thing that they all agreed on; that any government where men were involved was an accident waiting to happen. Yes, they all made mistakes. What is interesting with Adams and Jefferson is that they started out as great friends and co-patriots, then became bitter political enemies, and then in their twilight years, patched things up. They both died on the same day within hours of each other, July 4th, 1826.

The one idea they did get right was the distribution of power, and not just at the federal level, but at the state and local levels as well. Our main problem today is we have drifted away from the original design, and the federal government has usurped authority it was never meant to have.

The reason for quoting the founders is because most people have no clue what the founding generation intended when they created our system of government. Their words are much more eloquent than mine, and I find they can explain it much better than I can.

CLAIRE GAMACHE's picture

Change

Sometimes in life circumstances change and people have to adapt. Otherwise we would still be living in caves or running around in coonskin hats hunting b'ar like Daniel Boone. For the people who prefer living in caves the adjustment is difficult but nevertheless necessary. Several of your "facts" are simply incorrect. Congress has just passed an NRA inspired law that forbids the ATF from asking for an inventory from gun MANUFACTURERS and yes many guns have disappeared. The ATF has been without a director for over 8 years. How long does it take to study the issue? Perhaps this lack may, in fact, be partly to blame for the gun snafu with the Mexican gangs. ATF funding has also been gutted so that the organization is still the same size it was 30 years ago. All the laws that have been passed to make us safe still leave us with 32,000 gun deaths a year, way surpassing any other country per capita. Responsible gun owners would recognize that this and those 20 small coffins in Newtown mean we have a problem and would try to find helpful solutions instead of encouraging legislation that prevents the government from finding the people who should not have guns and disarming them.

 's picture

Change <> Results

Gun-control bills do nothing to change the behavior of criminals. They do have a tendency to make criminals out of otherwise law-abiding gun owners.

I challenge anyone to name a single gun control law that prevented a criminal from acquiring a firearm and using it to commit a crime.

We do not have a gun problem, we have a people problem. Every single shooter in these incidents has been using prescribed psychopathic medication and/or has a history of mental illness. That should be where our attention is focused, not on disarming America.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Well stated, Mr. Cimino.

Well stated, Mr. Cimino. Brace yourself for the onslaught from the 'boo birds'.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Excellent letter.

Excellent letter.

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