From the week of May 27, 1999

If you just look back to our grandparents' and great-grandparents' time, you will see that more people in this century have been killed by their own government than in the considerable history of 20th-century wars. We started the century with British concentration camps filled with Boer South Africans. Moved quickly to the mass execution of the Mexican Revolution, and really hit our stride with the 38 million executed in Stalinist Russia. The six million Jews and 10 million others that Hitler killed. Then the millions who were massacred through Red China's storied rule.

Think it can't happen here? Ask any Indian or Mormon. The Second Amendment guarantees it won't be so one-sided.

So increasingly the American people are caught between an autocratic government that disdains the constitution and a criminal class that disdains the law, or anything else in their way ("Beware, Capitalist Gun Nuts," Letters, May 6).

Two teachers at Columbine High School had concealed-weapons permits, but did not have their weapons on them because it was a "gun-free" school. Utopian, feel-good legislation kept them from putting a stop to this massacre. Blackford has never thought that maybe, just maybe, she contributed to it.

Steven K. Bowers
Apache Junction

Mission Statement
Steve May made a comment about the Mormon church casting out young men who don't serve missions ("Confessions of a Gay, Right-Wing Mormon," Amy Silverman, April 29). That is totally untrue. The church does not cast out anyone for the sole purpose of not attending a mission. The young men have their choice; some feel very strongly about it, and some don't. Mr. May should set the record straight and not try to bash "his" religion with little comments like that.

When there is a story dealing with anyone or anything that is a part of the Mormon religion, it gets pointed out as if it is a crime itself. You don't hear about the Catholic murderer or the Jewish thief, but we will hear about the "Mormon" murderer or the "Mormon" thief. Newspapers are quick to label like this. We are a Christian religion, and we have rights, just like any other religion, to believe what we believe and disagree on what we feel is wrong.

J. Ricks
via Internet

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