Questions about rights
Our government is concerned about the right to bear arms. What about the right to go to school and able to come home? Or the right to attend church/synagogue? The right to go to a grocery store? Who is protecting the rights of these individuals? If our government feels the cause of gun violence is mental health, then why do barriers exist for those to receive services?
Ann Febres, La Vista
In the wake of another school shooting, we have the same clueless calls for teachers to be armed. Let’s walk through the list of reasons why this is a horrible idea:
1.) As the World-Herald has noted, teacher burnouts and resignations are reaching historic highs. On top of all of their other duties, we are now going to add firearm proficiency? Do you think this is going to slow or hasten the rate of teachers leaving the profession?
2.) How many accidental discharges and on-campus suicides are going to result because we’ve now added additional guns to the equation?
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3.) This does nothing to remove the problem at hand — a monster with a firearm. All it may potentially do is reroute that shooter from a school to a mall or an office building or somewhere else to cause catastrophe. The concept that the problem here is purely mental is a ruse — other countries have people with mental issues and broken families but (for some reason) they don’t have the mass shootings like the United States does.
This supposed “solution” is nothing but an attempt to up sales for gun manufacturers, as there are almost four million teachers in the country who would need to be armed should this foolish idea pass. Happy to debate Jim Pillen on the topic, but as we know debates just aren’t his thing.
Michael Zack, Omaha
Drowning in profits
You may be happy to hear that not everyone is suffering from high gas prices. Oil and gas corporations, while continuing to lobby, are drowning in profits. Here are the profit’s for the first quarter of 2022 for five of the largest oil and gas corporations in the world:
Shell, $9.1 billion
ExxonMobil, $8.8 billion
Chevron, $6.5 billion
BP, $6.2 billion
ConocoPhillips, $4.3 billion
Instead of making the investments needed to help lower the price of oil, they reward their already wealthy shareholders with stock buybacks, or give it back to themselves in executive bonuses. I know it’s popular to blame the president for high inflation. But, wouldn’t it be worthwhile to look at the greed which underlies so many of our private institutions? Oil billionaires can argue that capitalism allows them to charge whatever the market can bear. But, if this isn’t price gouging, then I don’t know what is.
Robert Bastarache, Omaha
OWH Public Pulse May 2022
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