Letters to the editor, Mar. 15

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Hicks wrong about Israel and Maloney

Re: Candidate blasts Maloney on Israel, Middle East,” T&V, Mar. 8

Sander Hicks is no match for Mrs. Maloney. Firstly, what kind of activist is he? I also have a book he should read, if he’s smart enough, Old-New Land by Theodor Herzl. Herzl said, “Zionism is a return to Judaism and that even before the return to the Land of the Jews.” He needs to learn that anti-Zionism is the same as anti-Semitism, which means hating Jews. Is his kind of “activism” spray painting swastikas on synagogue doors in the dead of night? It wouldn’t surprise me. I don’t trust him to listen to me with his immature and idiotic viewpoint.

I read your article and so did many Jewish friends and we were all scared to see “men” (bigots) like him rise. Maloney does respond. I worked on her campaign before and people like him called all the time requesting, often impolitely, to be called back pronto. There simply weren’t enough hours in the day for her. As well, if she didn’t jump when he called, why didn’t he just call back? That’s what I do in that situation.

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Opinion: Winning at any cost

By former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

There are things said in the heat of a political campaign battle that you shrug off. There are other things which are said that can be taken as hyperbole. But Donald Trump twice crossed a line last week that is both dangerous and distorted and entirely unprecedented in modern American political campaigns.

First Trump claimed (incorrectly) that Hillary Clinton wishes to abolish the Second Amendment which provides protection for gun ownership. He then went on to say that if Clinton is elected president and appointed justices to the Supreme Court who concur in her point of view, the Second Amendment would be done away with “and there will be nothing that you can do about that, but maybe the Second Amendment people can… I dunno.”

This “joke” about people who possess weapons “doing something about it” can surely be interpreted and processed by sick minds as a call to take action against Hillary Clinton to preserve the Second Amendment and their guns. The Trump people say that their candidate was only talking about voting. But the candidate did not actually say that but rather implied something much differently. Responsible and mature people don’t even joke about things like that. We have witnessed too many mentally disturbed people taking cues to commit violence and we have seen too many American politicians slain in our own lifetimes to be so cavalier about that. Oh and by the way, a president cannot repeal the Second Amendment. That can only happen with a 2/3 majority vote in both houses, the House of Representatives and the Senate, and then the approval by at least three quarters of the individual states. But details, details, details.

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Pols rally for stronger gun laws

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Council Member Dan Garodnick at City Hall (Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Council Member Dan Garodnick at City Hall (Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, along with other elected officials, rallied at City Hall last Friday to demand that Congress take action on gun safety reforms, in light of the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando.

LGBT and gun safety advocates were also there, pushing for the renewal of the Assault Weapons Ban, which previously banned the use of semiautomatic assault weapons, but the law expired in 2004, as well as pushing for legislation that would require universal background checks and a bill that would prohibit those on a terrorist watchlist and those convicted of a hate crime from buying a gun.

Maloney has also pushed for legislation that would lift the prohibition on federal public health research on gun violence.

“No other bill relating to gun violence has been passed except for the study of gun safety,” she said at City Hall.

“The refusal to prevent future violence is unacceptable and the ban on public health research is totally insane.”

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Politics & Tidbits: Nine lives

Steven Sanders

Steven Sanders

By Former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

In previous columns I wrote that massacres with guns would continue until the U.S. Congress found the courage and intelligence to enact meaningful gun ownership restrictions.

So who can be surprised that a college campus in Oregon was yet the latest site of a mass murder?

The person who committed that heinous crime last week did so with legally purchased weapons. This time nine lives were lost to another deranged gunman. Nine more young people who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Nine families shattered, nine more funerals and countless more expressions of sorrow and sympathy from our leaders in Congress… and then nothing more, just a little road bump in the life of Congress.

It seems that the gun zealots and the misguided Second Amendment purists have the proverbial “nine lives.” Nothing seems to be horrific enough to kill off their ambitions to see even more guns proliferate our streets and communities and with no regulations.

If they were not moved to action three years ago when twenty toddlers were gunned down at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, what hope is there that this latest tragedy or the next one or the one after that will cause a change of heart or spur our weak-kneed Congress to finally act?

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