In response to the letter by Mr. Personius last week I have several comments. Firstly, there is an excellent website run by the Second Amendment Foundation at saf.org; this site has a page related to “bogus and fake quotations” by the Founding Fathers.
In part, it states:
“Creating bogus quotes is wrong and counterproductive. It harms the rest of the message sent by any person utilizing a proven fake quote, even if the person is unintentionally and unknowingly repeating a made-up statement. Perhaps the most ‘infamous’ bogus saying attributed to a Founding Father is the ‘liberty teeth’ quote alleged to have been said by George Washington. One version of this tale reads:
‘The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference; they deserve a place of honor with all that’s good.’” We don’t need made-up facts designed to excite a knee jerk.
Secondly, According to all available verifiable evidence, teachers and staff in Israel do not carry guns. In fact it is extremely difficult for anyone in Israel to get a permit (required) to carry a gun. Contrary to Mr. LaPierre of the NRA, there have not been “lots of school shootings” in Israel; in fact, only two in the last 40 years and those were terrorist attacks. Approximately 170,000 total permits have been issued. That’s about 2.5 percent of the population of Israel compared to our 30 percent.
Finally, I would like to point out the NRA talking point, repeated by Mr. Personius, that “now is not the time to do something” has been the omnipresent mantra used by the association everytime there is a mass shooting. The NRA is an organization devoted not to its members, but rather devoted to the firearm and accessory industry and keeping people buying weaponry is its primary goal. Now will never be the time for the NRA, but it is the time for our society to get serious about a problem that has no single solution but that must be talked about rationally, without shopworn talking points from either side of the debate.