Editor, the Advocate:
the Nov. 8 letter in the Victoria Advocate, "Mental health, access to
weapons is a real issue," the writer lays at least part of the blame
for the Nov. 5 shooting in Sutherland Springs on the five million
members of the National Rifle Association - of which I am a proud life
member. It is natural to want to blame someone, but that is an unfair
indictment of your friends and neighbors, as NRA members are not doing
The NRA stands in defense of all our freedoms,
not just the right to keep and bear arms. The NRA faces the reality
that law enforcement cannot be everywhere all the time to protect us.
So, the NRA advocates that our self-defense is our individual
responsibility, and our God-given right as affirmed in the Constitution.
As long as there are bad people out there who wish to do us harm -
whether with a gun, knife, car, truck, bomb or any other device - the
best way we can do that is to be armed ourselves.
shooting did illustrate is how our laws and our system failed the
victims of this man's hatred and evil. Were we not so afraid of
law-abiding citizens carrying guns to protect themselves and others,
this might not have been as horrific as it was.
Reports say the
ordeal lasted over seven minutes - which must have seemed like an
eternity to those trapped by their own inability to do anything to stop
the shooter. If only a few of the people in that church had been
carrying their own self-defense weapon, it is quite likely one or more
of them could have taken this maniac down in the first minute or two
before he killed and wounded as many as he did, maybe even before he got
inside the church.
This horrific event illustrates that our
government cannot protect us from harm. Sick, evil people are out
there, and no one knows where they will strike next, or when, or how.
It is our individual responsibility to protect ourselves, and the best
chance you have of protecting yourself and your loved ones if you are
ever in such a situation is to be armed and trained.
You should be thankful the NRA is relentless in fighting to protect your right to do so.
Terry Koehler, Port O'Connor