Wednesday, August 12, 2015

We need more German-style gun laws!

Here's my recent letter to the editor that they did not print:

Editor, News-Sentinel:

The August 4 writer suggests we need stronger German style gun laws to make America safer. The question is, safer for whom? German gun laws have a tainted history that suggests they are not a nation to emulate. Alfred Flatow would disagree with the writer as he shuffled to the train!

Flatow was a German who won first place in gymnastics at the 1896 Olympics. Having served honorably in the German Army in World War I, in 1932 he dutifully registered three handguns under a post-war German law. Government officials warned that registration records must be carefully stored so that they did not fall into the wrong hands.

But the Nazis, under Adolf Hitler, seized power in 1933. In 1938, the Nazis used those records to disarm enemies of the state, including Flatow, who had committed no crime. His arrest record October 4, 1938, stated, “Arms in the hands of Jews are a danger to public safety.”

Can you hear the plaintive whistle of the locomotives pulling boxcars loaded with God’s Chosen People off to the death camps? Can you hear the German congregations singing loudly so as to not hear those trains? Can you feel the terror of the German Jews on November 10, 1938, the Night of the Broken Glass*?

The first battle of our Revolutionary War was fought April 19, 1775, over an attempted Redcoat confiscation of American arms. Today, Americans are stockpiling firearms at a rate never seen before. New Yorkers have defied their state’s “assault weapon” registration law.

Nation after nation that has registered firearms has eventually moved on to confiscation. Gun sales growth and New Yorkers’ civil disobedience are a strong clue that Americans are not willing to chance German style gun laws. Safer for whom? Not for us.


Liston Matthews


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