Free speech shouldn't be a one-way street
The author of the Aug. 9 letter, "Proud to boo NRA at Alameda parade," lets slip the mask when she asks for help banning a group from a nominally public event. Her proud and loud support of First Amendment rights stops just short of allowing others, whose ideas differ from her own, to exercise them.
Anti-NRA people totally brainwashed
It is obvious that those in the NRA "boo" crowd need to read and understand the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. After accomplishing that chore, I suggest they go to the NRA website and read what the organization actually does.
I suspect they will accept nothing they read at that site, as they are thoroughly brainwashed by the "gun grabber" crowd. It is most unlikely that anyone in Oakland shooting at children is the owner of a legally registered weapon or an NRA member.
These people are trying to defame the NRA with absolutely no knowledge of guns. Perhaps many of the illegal guns in California are a portion of the guns provided to the Mexican cartels by the U.S. government.
The Bloomberg report estimate of 33,000 shooting deaths in 2015 was quoted. Yet, what was not noted is that based on 2010 statistics, of the 30,470 shooting deaths in 2010, 19,392 were suicides, (roughly two-third of the gun deaths). It is probable that many, if not most, of the suicides were committed with legally purchased and registered handguns.
Furthermore, there are 443,000 deaths attributable to smoking and 75,000 alcohol-related deaths in America each year. Could it be that they are castigating the wrong group? I trust the mayor will forward the petition to ban the NRA from future parades to the circular file. They may wish to read the First Amendment in this regard.
Live in Mexico if you hate guns so much
Regarding the Aug. 9 letter "Proud to boo NRA at Alameda parade," I, too, am an Alameda mom and a U.S. citizen. While I am a full supporter of freedom of speech, I would like to correct a few critical inaccurate statements made.
First of all, the NRA does not support automatic weapons. Automatic weapons are illegal; they are a felony to own and will never be legal for an average citizen to possess. Furthermore, the atrocities referenced in Columbine and Newtown were horrible displays of human derangement and illustrate a much bigger issue: violent criminals walking our streets.
Instead of booing the NRA at the parade, perhaps anger should be directed at the politicians who fail to implement proper laws in putting these beasts behind bars, or at the sad realization that our social system is set to fail those who need mental help.
Even more sickening is the fact that we are releasing violent criminals from prisons by the thousands, and yet we keep blaming the weapons. These murderers are not members of the NRA. If someone is willing to commit the most illegal crime against humankind -- murder -- why would a simple gun law stop them anyway? These dregs of society are not taking classes on responsible gun handling and certainly are not acquiring their weapons from reputable outfits.
The NRA isn't just about gun-ownership; it's about rights. How far are you willing to let the government strip you of your rights? The NRA supports responsible gun ownership. Remember the recent botched-robbery at the Bonfare Market? I stand up and applaud that off-duty deputy who exercised his right of gun ownership. Innocent lives were saved.
We hope never to encounter a mentally defective person in a life-threatening way, but guns can, have and will continue to save lives and protect people. For those who disagree with allowing responsible gun owners to express their freedoms, perhaps a move to Mexico should be considered, where guns are illegal -- and where the murder rate is exponentially higher than that of the United States. Think about that.
Developer Cowan just won't give up
Ron Cowan and crew are at it again. Cowan seems to think his life isn't going to be complete until he builds more houses in a place that isn't zoned for houses.
Now he wants to take a valuable community recreation space, the Harbor Bay Club, and turn it into 80 or more homes. Haven't we heard this story before? He says he's entitled to build the homes. Not. The entitlement issue was settled during the Mif Albright fiasco.
Now he wants to remove the only designated community recreation space at Harbor Bay. Not only is it a bad idea for the community, but it is a dangerous idea for Amelia Earhart School. Anyone who has tried to navigate the school traffic in the morning knows how crazy it is to consider adding 130 more cars to the mix during the school and commute hour.
The 2007 settlement agreement between the city of Alameda and Cowan's Harbor Bay Isle associates allowed them to apply for rezoning of a commercial property in the Business Park. Part of the rationale for that decision was that the Business Park property is located outside of Harbor Bay, and building new homes there would not add to the already-quite-dense housing at Harbor Bay.
The settlement expected that traffic going to and from the new homes would use Ron Cowan Parkway. Well, guess what? Neither of those provisions hold true for the ill-conceived Packet Landing plan on a dead-end street. New homes on the nine acres where the Harbor Bay Club is would certainly increase the housing density because they would be built on land already within Harbor Bay.
Let's be clear: There is no other way to get to and from these proposed new homes without adding a lot of traffic to Packet Landing, Robert Davey Jr Drive, Island Drive, Otis Street and Fernside. Join the Harbor Bay Neighbors group in opposing this lame idea. Add your name in support on the Harbor Bay Neighbors website: harborbayneighbors.wordpress.com. Let's show Ron Cowan and his minions that this is our town -- not their little SimCity.
member, Harbor Bay Neighbors