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Ohio should join states with concealed carry laws



Published: Thu, September 6, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



Ohio should join states with concealed carry laws

EDITOR:

We do not have to look very far for truths concerning the consequences of concealed carry. Forty-four of our nation's 50 states already have some form of concealed carry. Our neighbor, Pennsylvania, is one of those states and has been for a very long time.

Opponents of concealed carry legislation insist on painting nightmarish pictures of increased instances of & quot;Wild West & quot; shoot-outs, of police being & quot;gunned down & quot; during routine traffic stops and of road rage culminating in murder. I admit, these are very scary nightmares.

However, I must respond, as I respond to my tearful daughter when she awakens from a nightmare in the middle of the night -- & quot;It is only a bad dream. Everything is okay. & quot; These fears created by anti CCW advocates collapse when examples of such acts cannot be found no matter how deeply one searched any of the 44 states allowing CCW. CCW legislation does nothing to increase firearms possessed by criminals regardless of law.

After all breaking the law is the foundation of the criminals' job description.

Many Ohioans travel to Pennsylvania daily. Pennsylvania allows its residents, and residents of other states, to apply for and acquire permits to carry concealed firearms there Many Ohioans possess permits issued by Pennsylvania.

Those who oppose, or fear, legislation allowing concealed carry would benefit from educating themselves, with an open mind, in order to make an informed, rational, responsible decision. Crime statistics can be found on the Internet and in libraries. Statistics from states with and without the right to carry can be compared. Before and after statistics can be compared in states that adopted the right to carry legislation.

Only after reviewing these statistics, are we ready to make a decision based on facts, rather than fantasies and bad dreams. Only then, are we ready to answer the question; & quot;Does the right to carry a concealed firearm increase crime? & quot; The answer will likely be "no."

Those who believe in concealed carry know that policemen, although well trained, cannot be everywhere all the time. In most cases, they are unable to arrive before a citizen becomes the victim of a violent crime before they are beaten, raped or murdered, or before they witness the beating, rape or murder of a loved one.This sounds like a nightmare, but it is not. & quot; This is not only a bad dream. Everything is not okay. & quot; This is reality. This is the reality we created when we made laws that inhibited our ability to protect our loved ones and ourselves. Being the law-abiding citizens that we are, our hands are tied -- are they not?

CHRISTINE KALEDA

Youngstown

Proposed PUCO rules would hurt seniors

EDITOR:

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio is in the process of adopting new rules for local telephone services. Telephone companies could increase services as they choose. It appears to me that our state government is not looking after its citizens. This will affect our seniors' low incomes The handicap senior citizen population will continue to grow and it's time we join together to expose this fraud. We found out about "so-called" deregulation the hard way, in our pocket books. It appears to me that most low-income people won't be able to afford a telephone after June 2002.

THOMAS P. GILMARTIN

Youngstown




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