Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Your Views - Letters from Our Readers; Opinion

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Your Views - Letters from Our Readers; Opinion

Article excerpt

Gun owners are affected by laws, paranoia

Gun ownership in America is at an all-time high, violent crime rates are hovering near all-time lows but with the recent multiple- victim public shootings, the reality of private gun ownership and its impact is quickly overlooked. With all the vitriolic debate, I wonder: Why do people become so concerned or perhaps even fiercely afraid of their neighbor who may own a semi-automatic rifle?

Are these gun owners really so different? Do we not enjoy the same Cardinals win at Busch? Do we not drive by them each day on our way to work and gladly let them merge in front of us? Do we not sit in church with these same people? Do we not walk together in the same park and greet each other as we pass? Why then does fear soar when one learns that same person might own a gun, and blisters even higher if he owns a semi-automatic rifle?

With all of the attention given to the weapons, remember the owner is the one actually affected by these laws. If youre really so worried about your next door neighbor, perhaps your paranoia is the one out of check compared to the librarian that owns a semi- automatic rifle.

Mark Turpin St. Louis

Children in poverty need well-funded public schools

I read the article Charter success (Feb. 17) with great interest and am delighted that this particular charter school has been successful in ways that other charter schools have not. I found a balance to the reporting as the concern, which I deeply feel, about the lack of funding for our city public schools, and the disadvantage to the children who live in poverty and whose parents are not savvy enough to either value education or to advocate for quality education for their own children.

As a clinical social worker, I have worked in schools throughout the metropolitan area and have witnessed first-hand the harshness of poverty and the negative impact on learning for children who live in poverty. A city and/or neighborhood that is not farsighted enough to invest in quality education for all lacks knowledge of how crime becomes intergenerational as a lifestyle. Children who cant read and receive social promotions allow them to graduate without basic academic skills; they often have no way out of poverty other than crime. …

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