Existing gun laws address only part of carnage guns...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

November 22, 1999

Existing gun laws address only part of carnage guns cause

Rep. Robert L. Ehrlich's letter concerning gun laws only addressed part of the problem, and furthered his allegiance to the National Rifle Association ("Tough enforcement of current gun laws can curtail crime," Nov. 8)

The NRA's premise is that we just need to enforce our current laws against criminals to solve our gun death problem. Mr. Ehrlich's support of Project Exile is in line with this approach.

Project Exile is an effective program against criminals, but it ignores a large part of problem.

Statistics show that every year we lose many young people to accidental shootings and suicide.

Depression in young people can be treated, but easy access to guns is deadly -- as 92 percent of suicide attempts with guns results indeath. Accidental shootings among children -- using gun without safety locks -- are also all too common, and often deadly.

Gov. Parris N. Glendening's proposed personalized weapons or child-proof guns bill would address both those problems.

Since support on the federal level is also important, I hope Mr. Ehrlich will broaden his view of gun laws that protect our children.

Fred Davis

Baltimore

Guns don't call us to lives of crime

A recent letter averred that the presence of guns causes otherwise normal persons to become criminals ("Easy access to guns turns citizens into criminals," Nov. 16).

I submit that if this be the case, then the presence of matches causes arsonists and the presence of pencils causes otherwise normal folks to become editors.

Somehow this does not ring true to me, not any of it.

If your reader has so little control of himself that being in the presence of a gun would cause him to behave in a criminal manner, perhaps he should consider becoming a monk, locked in a cell, where he can do little more than think and pray.

For myself, in the nearly 60 years that I have been around guns, they have never whispered to me that I must a criminal be.

Robert A. Rudolph

Reisterstown

Augsburg Home offers safe harbor for displaced

Can you imagine my chagrin when I saw, for a second time, a picture of Augsburg Lutheran Home and Village that portrays the plight of the elderly who have to leave their homes at the soon-to-close Church Home Hospital and move to a new nursing care center (letters, Nov. 17)?

The poignant photo of Gladys Stavely in Augsburg Lutheran Home's chapel seems to imply that care might not be so good where she is going.

But no mention has been made that homes where residents of Church Home are moving are also excellent homes.

No mention was made of Augsburg's 107 years of service, professional staff, large cadre of volunteers, Christian atmosphere, or any of the other features that have made it a wonderful home to hundreds for more than a century.

Having to move from your home of many years in your nineties is not desirable.

But I know that those who move to Augsburg Lutheran Home will find a vibrant, wholesome home.

Each resident is, according to its mission, "cared for as if he or she were the Lord Himself."

Clare Workneh

Ellicott City

The writer is director of development at Augsburg Lutheran Home.

Smoking is also dangerous to our precious heritage

We've known for years that smoking is hazardous to our health and economy.

After the recent Ellicott City fire, another danger needs to be added to the list: smoking can also be very hazardous to our precious historical heritage.

Stephen L. Sprecher

Catonsville

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