Put our heads together 

A previous letter called us all to action to end gun violence. As the letter progressed it made me feel that gun owners were at the center of the problem. We are not the problem. Adding more laws on top of the 200 existing gun control laws will not change the illegal and violent uses that are cited in the letter. In fact, it sounds like gun owners are being asked to solve all the mental health and hate issues that are prevalent in our culture today. In order to attempt this goal we would have to know who hates whom and why. Then they would have to be identified. I believe the ACLU would put a stop to that very quickly.

Another question was about belonging to an organization. Some are; some aren’t. There are small clubs and large. The biggest one is the NRA (National Rifle Association). I’m sure most of us have heard of that one. The NRA and those who belong to and support the NRA are often demeaned, ridiculed, and insulted for believing in the right to bear arms (that doesn’t mean we have the right to wear sleeveless clothing).

If we are on the shooting range, we have to be aware of those around us and practice gun safety. So far, I have not noticed anyone “outside a healthy norm.” And, if I did, what would be expected of me? (Tackling is not my strong suit.)

And finally, the issue about high velocity and rapid-fire weapons. First, we need an accurate definition, second, we have to acknowledge that weapons can be modified after purchase. My only suggestion is: Better Enforcement of the existing laws and better mental health awareness and curative treatment.       

Pat McShane, Kerrville

Greystone yet lives 

Wow. It’s been an exciting week for David, I and Greystone. Every where we go — HEB, Belks, Schreiner University, random people stop both David and I to express their sympathies — they just can’t believe Greystone is no longer going to be part of the community. We, too, are sad to leave this gracious community that we have called home for 15 years. We’ve raised two incredible daughters here, we’ve made lifelong friends and truly believe we made a difference. The students who have completed the Greystone program at Schreiner University mentored and tutored weekly at the elementary schools, assisted at countless city events, helped out on the university — they were a “go-to” ready source for many. Unfortunately, because our students are not degree-seeking students, they are not eligible for state or federal tuition assistance. The cost of Schreiner is just too much for our families. Greystone worked very hard to find a solution for Schreiner other than “absolving our 501-3c status” and giving the program to Schreiner. We were excited at the prospect of assisting with the VA program, unfortunately, the compromise could not be found. Honestly, we have too many great ideas to give Greystone up at this point! We will always be grateful for Tim Summerlin who had the courage to bring in this new, unproven program 15 years ago. Greystone students will continue to thrive at the academies, they will continue to make a difference on the world stage! Just not from Schreiner. So, do us a favor, when you hear we are retiring — stop the rumor! Set the record straight. We are moving the program because our families cannot afford Schreiner — it’s that simple. Retiring? I don’t think so! Too many young leaders to mentor!

Forever grateful to this community, 

Brenda Bailey, Kerrville

(1) comment

Mary Lou Shelton

Mr. McShane, I hardly think any research is need to identify weapons that are best suited to kill large numbers of people. All that testing was done years ago by the military, hence "assault weapons" in .223 caliber. Very little recoil so you don't jump off target every time you fire, and petty horrendous results to the people you hit. A short barreled rifle with a high fire rate and little recoil is the perfect weapon for a novice to rapidly learn to control reasonably well when shooting at close range. Blaming the mentally ill has been debunked repeatedly (I guess you missed the article discussing mass shootings). But lets say, for the sake of argument, that the mentally ill do all the mass killings. So how much money for taxes and how many individual freedoms do you wish to give up so we can begin a massive effort to identify all the mentally ill, and then further evaluate them for potential violence? Or maybe just lock all of them up so our precious rights to unlimited magazine capacity wont be infringed upon? As to NRA members, I have seen no scorn heaped on them, and I read a lot of news. I do think the NRA is now a full fledged propaganda organization who has moved far away from their original purposes. They also seem to have rather corrupt upper level leadership who is busy padding their own pockets with your money. I do agree that weapons can be modified, and there is also the problem of ghost guns. But because you cannot come up with a perfect solution is no reason not to proceed with good solutions. Yet this seems to be the position of the NRA. Amazing that an organization that purports to be for freedom is pretty callous when it comes to their regard for the freedom of the mentally troubled. Gene

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