What Happened NRA?
I spent much of my childhood in western Pennsylvania, known for its vast tracts of beautiful forest land, ever popular with hunters. I was introduced to guns before I was 10, and I was introduced to the NRA at the same time. In those days, the NRA was a highly regarded organization, dedicated to teaching how to properly use and care for legal firearms. Learning respect for guns was as much a part of my boyhood as my monthly issue of Boy's Life magazine. At that time, NRA support for the Second Amendment was both reverent and rational. What has happened?
Today the NRA leadership is dominated by an extreme right wing, extremely paranoid, non-representative group of individuals who believe that the Second Amendment is absolute in its scope, ignoring the fact that no other amendment is so fanatically regarded. The close alliance of these "superpatriots" with the gun industry is chilling. Every time they send out their false alarms that the government is about to strip away all gun rights, gun sales skyrocket. I'm betting that big-time gun lobbyists like Wayne LaPierre, with his million-dollar a year salary, are laughing all the way to the bank.
A favorite refrain among NRA apologists is "Guns don't kill people; people kill people." I recently heard a retort to this absurd defense that sums up the reality nicely: "Yes, people kill people, but people with assault rifles kill more people." Ban them. That's a better idea than issuing AK47s to our teachers.
Thanks to the volunteers and service clubs in our town for installing the lights to make Nature's Coastal Holiday a wonderland for children and adults.
Thanks to the engineers of the Stout Mountain Railroad for entertaining everyone who ever received a train, or wanted one for Christmas.
And thanks especially to CandK Markets, represented by Jimmy Martini and Stacy Patton, for bringing our community a festival of Christmas trees and the wonder of Santa and his wife, accompanied by real reindeer.
What a holiday wonderland Brookings can be. Thanks to everyone who volunteered time, labor and money. We're proud to be a part of it all.
Janet and Garth Richey
A new prediction
If you are reading this letter, take courage. The world did not end Dec. 21 and you were not raptured away, so you still have work to do and bills to pay.
I am only making one prophecy at this time. After carefully considering the present position of the earth, the sun and the moon relative to the constellations of Capricorn and Pisces, the adoption of the Gregorian calendar in 1752 in the British Colonies and the import of various ancient and modern writings, I predict that the year 2012 will end on December 31st.
This event will produce significant change, and there will be no going back. We will be using different numbers and many of us will forget that, from time to time, until February. It is important to prepare the food you will need before predictable events occur, and there will be consequences after December 24th if you do not set out the requisite cookies and milk. I recommend conferring with your children about this.
William O. West
My wife and I just retired from teaching in Alaska and moved to this wonderful town. What a beautiful setting. Redwoods to the south, beautiful beaches to the west, and a National Forest to the east. We really love it here.
However, there is one little suggestion I have to improve the quality of life here. Turn your headlights on when the weather takes a turn for the worse. It boggles my mind that drivers (you know who you are) would routinely drive in the rain, mist, and fog without headlights. Headlights serve two purposes; to see and to be seen.
Thanks, I feel much better now.