Letters to the editor, Feb. 21
February 20, 2013 4:10PM
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Updated: March 22, 2013 6:08AM
We can argue about guns or we can stop the killings
Recently, I watched with great interest an informal discussion between Capt. Mark Kelly (Gabby Giffords’ husband) and Wayne LaPierre (spokesman for the NRA). Both had interesting viewpoints on gun control. I came away with the feeling that there won’t be an acceptable solution any time soon.
Everyone seems to have an opinion. I’m no exception. My opinion is that the interpretation of the Second Amendment is a stretch at best, but arguing about it is not going to solve the immediate problem: senseless killing. Gun violence in this country needs to be addressed one step at a time.
I believe we need to address high-capacity assault weapons first. This type of weapon has no place in the hands of us “law-abiding” citizens. They should be reserved for use by the military or police agencies. If we feel the need to have a weapon to protect our families, then it should be limited to hunting rifles, shotguns or low-capacity handguns. As it stands now, a goose has more rights and protection under the law than our citizens. It’s against the law to goose hunt with a machine gun or shotgun that has more than three shells in it. So, why should there be high-capacity weapons available for use on us?
Second, in the past LaPierre has stated that if more law-abiding citizens carried guns it would deter the “bad guys.” He may have a valid point. However, what good does it do if the law-abiding citizens hide their weapons? If you want to carry a weapon outside your home, then strap it on your hip like Wyatt Earp. That way the “bad guys” can see you are ready for just about anything, and I can take measures to avoid any type of behavior that would be perceived as a threat.
The goal should be to stop the senseless killing, not take away rights. If we don’t do something, the massacres will continue.
Here’s how to figure out the tax rate of the Fair Tax Act
The Fair Tax Act proposes a tax on all new merchandise and services in place of all income taxes, payroll taxes, corporation taxes, and taxes on dividends, interest, and capital gains. Critics of the act, which proposes a 23 percent inclusive tax, have confused the issue by saying this law is a 30 percent tax. Consider the following explanation.
The 23 percent tax is included in the stated price of each item or service. Thus for a $100 item, $23 goes for taxes, and the remaining $77 pays the cost of the item. This is the same as saying that if you are in the 25 percent income tax bracket, for every $100 you earn, $25 goes for taxes and you keep $75. On the other hand, if you divide $23 by $77 you come up with a 30 percent tax; but to be fair, your income tax rate by this same method would be calculated by dividing $25 by $75, which is 33 percent. And if you add in your $7.65 payroll tax for Social Security, you now pay $32.65 and keep $67.35, which is really a 48.5 percent tax. Thus the 30 percent Fair Tax rate looks good.
Patrick R. Burkett