Letter: 'By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail'

Editor:

Common Sense Bill of Rights America, can we return common sense to our interpretations of the Bill of Rights of the United States of America?

We hear so much about a person's "rights" that we neglect the "responsibilities" that go along with those rights.

Article 1 allows for individual freedom of religion, speech, the press, and the right to peaceably assemble.

HOWEVER, they do not confer the right to force one person's exercise of these freedoms onto another person. We each have the right to our religion of preference and our opinions.

We do not have the right to insist that our rights take precedence over our neighbors, nor do we have the right to make libelous or slanderous statements against others, nor do we have the right to incite violence or riot.

Freedom of speech is freedom to form and state our own opinions, not insist that ours are the only or even the best interpretations.

And remember the freedom is for peaceable assembly, not interrupting another's peaceable assembly or inciting a riot or other violence in your quest to push/prove your opinion.

Article 2 allows for all persons to bear arms, that is to own and use firearms of any type without restriction forced by the Federal or State governments. We have now experienced several instances of foreign-born terrorism on our own shores, instances that could, and possibly should, be construed as acts of war against the United States of America.

How could those instances have been averted or the injury or loss of life reduced had even one person had the means to fight back.

This is our country and we, as Americans, have a right and obligation to help defend it.

Remember: it is not law-abiding citizens who commit these atrocities, it is criminals. And gun-control laws only affect law-abiding citizens, as criminals will generally obtain their weapons of choice outside the laws anyway.

Look at Chicago, which has some of the toughest gun control laws in the nation, and yet they have some of the highest gun-related deaths and injuries in the country.

What does that say about gun-control laws? If you don't like guns, don't buy one; but you do not have the right to insist that others restrict or give up entirely their rights to own guns.

As Benjamin Franklin stated many years ago, "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail." Are you ready to fail your family and friends by being unprepared for the violence that has reached our shores?

Tina Gozdan

Cottonwood

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