Protesters subjected to disrespect

Sunday, September 8, 2019
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Guest Opinion

On Wednesday, Sept. 4, a small group of Glendive residents were in front of the Glendive United Methodist Church. This is not the first time we have been there protesting the gun violence going on in our country and is on the increase. Our signs are simple; “End Gun Violence”, “End Racism Now”, “Congress Do Your Job”, “Ban Assault Weapons”, “God Is Our Refuge”. Nothing too difficult to get anyone’s brain around.

This particular Wednesday a truck of young men drove by, I was told they were high school students on lunch break. As they drove by, they began to holler foul language. On their return trip they were hollering something else that none of us could understand. Based on the age of our group I would have to ask these young men if they talk to their parents or grandparents or teachers that way? Also, as the group was outside a church, is this the kind of Christian up bring they have had? Do they talk to their preacher or priest with that kind of language? I am sure the answer to all those questions is, no.

The focus of this group is to highlight the senseless killing that is going on in our country. There are just too many guns, in the wrong hands and assault weapons that do not belong in the public sector. For those not aware, assault weapons were designed and manufactured for one purpose only: to kill as many humans as possible as quickly as possible. They are not designed for hunting, only to kill humans. As for the too many guns, this is not the old west. As for the guns being in the wrong hands, the recent killings have been centered around hate. Hate of people of a different race or religion. Hate of one’s self due to unfulfilled life expectations, i.e, blaming others. Oh, hate is not a mental illness. Hate is just hate, it is learned.

At no time has this group called for taking anyone’s hunting rifles or shotguns or target pistols or just somebody’s gun collection. Owning a gun is a really serious thing. You have to be responsible for the security of the gun. You have to be properly educated in the proper handling of every gun you own. The group is only attempting to get lawmakers to do something to make American citizens safe in their own home, when they go shopping, when they go to school, when they go to work, just about anywhere or anyplace we go.

For parents, if you have high school age youngsters, please ask them to read this letter. Have a talk with them about polite discourse. Hollering obscenities at people on the street is not a very nice thing to do and certainly not folks who are sitting outside a church.

I know many do not agree with the message we are trying to send. That is ok. Look at it this way, we may not agree on what the best ice cream is either.

Some may recognize my name as I have previously written letters to the editor. For those who don’t, I am a 21 year veteran of the US Marine Corps. I know weapons and guns and the damage they can do to the human body.

It is bad enough to have to see that during war, which I have. It is unconscionable for anyone to support measures that allow that to happen in civil society. I hope none of you have to find out one day that a family member or friend has had their life taken away in some senseless killing and certainly not a child/ grandchild who just went to school. Think about that. Come join us on Wednesday (noon to 1:00). If you are a high school student (and your parents approve) join us during your lunch break. We provide chairs and water.