Hunting amendment also has hidden consequences
State Sens. Brent Steele, R-Bedford, and Carlin Yoder, R-Middlebury, seek to convince fellow legislators and citizens to support a legislative mandate (SJR 0007) that classifies the recreational pastime of hunting as a state constitutional right. To garner additional support of this frivolous measure, constitutional protection would also be extended to farming.
Conveniently omitted from the senators’ finely tuned news release, and consequently lacking from media reports, was any reference to the other harmful provision that mandates hunting to be the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife. If adopted, and later approved by Indiana citizens, this provision will prevent local governments and communities from managing wildlife populations through non-lethal means.
Wildlife management techniques should be based on sound science and ecosystem balance – not predetermined by political maneuvers specifically designed to drown out future majority voices.
Democracy serves the will of the people. This proposed constitutional amendment completely undermines this fundamental concept.
Monopolizing legislators’ time and taxpayer resources for the sole purpose of legislating minority interests on a foundational level should be rejected by all elected officials and citizens respectful of the democratic process.
LAURA M. NIRENBERG Founding director/president Center for Wildlife Ethics LaPorte
Accused public official should be placed on leave
I was appalled to read Maynard Scales’ public comments regarding the criminal charges pending against Housing Choice Voucher Program Director Betty L. Anderson (6 charged with food stamp theft, Feb. 19). At the very least, Scales should have placed this employee – no matter how valued – on administrative leave. Pending criminal charges against any employee demand internal investigation to protect the integrity of the organization and the public’s perception of how their funds are being utilized. Obviously, public trust does not matter to Scales and his board.
LINDA DAVIS McMAHON Hicksville, Ohio
Education on use of firearms should be a national priority
The Second Amendment to the Constitution provides us with the freedom to bear arms. There is much more to this amendment, but let’s stick to the point where everyone seems upset these days.
I’m sure back when the Constitution was written, people knew how to use firearms, knew that bullets traveled a certain distance and still could kill, bullets could ricochet and kill and cleaning a loaded weapon could kill. Having a loaded gun in the house for protection meant putting it up and away from small children. These basic facts, most people don’t know about or don’t realize. When I was a young child my grandfather taught me what a gun was and what it could do, and then he taught me to respect it for what it was.
So before we start banning certain guns and certain size magazines, why don’t we start by training the American citizens on the proper use and safety of a firearm? It’s an extremely simple law that I’m sure would gain support across the country. We would not be taking away a freedom; rather, we would be training the American people why our Founding Fathers wanted us to have this freedom. Additionally, since we have the ability to measure a person’s mental capacity today, which wasn’t available back when this amendment was written, I believe we should require a full background check, including mental stability.
I realize this doesn’t take the semiautomatic guns off the streets, but at the same time, the people using these types of guns will continue to get them whether they are illegal or not. One thing this country has proven time and again: If we want something, we are going to get it.
DALE PIERCE Leo-Cedarville