Thoughts from an NRA Life Member

It is anyone’s right to blame the NRA for the shootings in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio, even if they know nothing about what the NRA is really about.

I have been a Life Member of the NRA since 1973. I thoroughly read their magazine and have never read them promoting shooting anyone unless it is for self-defense or defending the lives of others.

They do promote the use of firearms for hunting, sport target shooting or by collectors who may have never shot a gun in their lives!

A very ignored point is that there are 5 million members in the NRA. There are 100 million firearms owners in the U.S. There are 300 million firearms in the U.S.

There are 10,000 murders in the U.S., 7,000 by handguns used by gang-to-gang wars in the big cities.

Close to 30,000 people are killed in auto wrecks and 75,000 by drugs! The horror hits me too, but it is because it is one person killing many at one time. Auto deaths are usually one person killing one, two or three. Drug deaths are one killing one by overdose. So it is “nothing” for the anti-gunners to even think about these trivial deaths!

Let’s get our young to learn the definition of the word “respect” — that is their parents’ responsibility to teach them. Let’s get rid of the blood-and-guts games and movies that I think affect their brains! Think about it — 16- to 25-year-olds are creating the carnage.

James Penton,


An open letter to Rep. Michael Burgess:

The front page of the Denton Record-Chronicle on July 31 had a striking juxtaposition of side-by-side articles: “Scores stand against hate” and next to it “Burgess sticks up for Trump in town hall.”

In the town hall, you were challenged about your refusal to publicly denounce inflammatory and divisive comments by our president. Rather than defend values, you defended his hate — the contrast of the two headlines. One of the reasons the president’s comments have become more personally directed at individual members of Congress (your colleagues), cities, our world allies, cultures and many of our citizens in general is that elected representatives refuse to hold him accountable. By remaining silent, you and your mute colleagues endorse his behavior.

This is not about party affiliation or legislation. This is about civility and decency. Your title is Representative Burgess, meaning you are responsible for representing the citizens of this congressional district, not just legislatively but also in values. As our representative, represent us by publicly denouncing unacceptable comments, not defending them. This is not about you but us. Recent events underscore that this rhetoric will continue to become more inflammatory, divisive and hostile. Blind partisanship does not defend decency.

We all have to assume that as a physician, your humanity is very strong. If your fear of retribution from the president overrides that humanity, I suspect that many of your former patients will welcome your return to medical practice.

Dennis Fisher,


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