Right to bear arms not meant to terrorize
Re: the Aug. 1 article "Group protests allowing weapons on city buses."
Responsible gun owners would not take exposed guns on a bus. They know that most passengers would be alarmed by the sight of the gun, and it is likely that some riders would be absolutely terrified because of past gun violence in their lives.
It is a moral outrage to terrify and intimidate other people in a public setting. A man sitting on a bus with an AR-15 with a magazine in the rifle is no different than a man sitting on a bus and slamming a magazine into a semiautomatic pistol and racking the slide. Even I, a combat veteran and former police officer, would be alarmed.
If a gun owner wants to carry a gun anywhere in public, carry it concealed. The Second Amendment was never meant to be a tool for creating fear, bullying and intimidation against innocent people.
Lee S. Aitken
Elks work to support schoolchildren
Re: the July 28 column "How one school seeks to close the gap."
We are proud to compliment Sarah Garrecht Gassen for her in-depth reporting on the Walter Douglas Elementary School in her three columns about volunteering at the school. We are particularly proud to be able to support the students selected by the administrators of Walter Douglas School through our Clothe a Child Shopping Spree, which we hold twice a year, near Easter and near Christmas.
It is obvious that the school administrators have the respect of the students by the way students conducted themselves. This is only one of the youth-oriented programs carried out by Tucson Elks Lodge No. 385 in support of our community. We have hoop-shoot contests, soccer-shoot contests and also grant scholarships to deserving students graduating from high school. The scholarships are granted in scholastic, vocational and hardship areas.
Earl L. Wilford
War profiteering isn't sound of freedom
Re: the July 10 letter to the editor "F-35 assignments a victory for Arizona."
The war profiteers shouting that the F-35 is the "sound of freedom" all emphasize jobs and business. But the roaring sounds of war-making are almost always the sound of profit-taking (see "All Wars are Banker Wars" on YouTube). Presidents and soldiers including Lincoln, Eisenhower, Maj. Gen. Smedley Butler (please look him up), Gen. Colin Powell and many others, have campaigned against it.
The real sound of freedom is, and always has been, the sounds of the free press, republican democracy and justice for all. Of course, a strong defense is essential. But taking profit from the machinery of self-defense completely desecrates the ultimate sacrifice our loved ones have made and keep making. Shame and disgrace upon such profiteers.
And besides that, what could possibly make our nation and planet more secure than to divorce the love of money from the love of country?
Guy Josserand III
Old Pueblo is unique: celebrate, honor that
Re: the July 10 editorial "'Old Pueblo' speaks of who we are as a city."
The Old Pueblo is unique. Why would we want to change our image? Do we really want to look and be like everywhere else? Tucson is famous for who we are and where we are! Tucsonans are compassionate, generous, caring, enthusiastic and creative. We have an exciting, historical, cultural, desert environment.
Do we desire the trap of wasteful expansion? Let's use what we already have. Tucson has always attracted interesting people and enterprises. We don't need to change or modernize our image - just make more of it. Local treasures include science, museums, the air force base, schools, wildlife, sports, theater, innovative locally owned businesses - plus lots more.
We need to maintain our values, to grow in our own shadow, celebrating our own stories and utilizing our own special gifts. We are Tucson - the Old Pueblo!
Rillito Park expansion targets horse racing
Pima County is attempting to destroy historic Rillito Park Racetrack through a project proposal labeled "Rillito Park Conversion." As this property was given to Pima County by horsemen to perpetuate racing, one might assume the county wants to convert it to a one-mile oval. Nothing could be further from the truth. They want to demolish the racetrack, barns and buildings and put in more soccer fields.
Why is it necessary to destroy horse racing in Southern Arizona when every middle school and high school has soccer fields? Who made soccer king? I approve of any sport that gets our young people moving, but what about other youth sports?
One has to wonder why every other sport must step aside and horse racing must be driven into extinction for more soccer fields. Don't be fooled. Do not support the Rillito Park conversion plan.
Pima County Horsemen's Association, Tucson