The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

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January 17, 2013

Gun proposal sparks high caliber debate

As expected, President Barack Obama’s remarks Wednesday morning outlining his gun control proposals sparked a firestorm of debate, including on the Herald-Banner Facebook page.

More than 90 comments were offered on the topic as of Wednesday evening, with some posters arguing against the measures as a potential first step toward taking away firearms altogether and others wanting something to be done to curb gun violence.

Obama called on Congress to pass universal background checks and ban military-style assault weapons, and also used his presidential powers to enact 23 measures that don’t require the backing of lawmakers; including ordering federal agencies to make more data available for background checks, appointing a director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and directing the Centers for Disease Control to research gun violence.

“Kudos to the President,” offered Kendall Motzny shortly after the announcement.

“Impeach!! He’s violating OUR rights as legal US citizens,” countered Britney Jester and several others.

John Beckett wondered whether the additional measures would make a difference.

“Illinois has one of the most stringent gun laws in the U.S. but has one of the highest violent crime rates,” Beckett said. “If u want a gun then you will find a way to get ahold of one. No law will stop that fact. We need better laws and rules concerning people with mental issues. Not punishing/ restricting people who are law abiding citizens.”

“Come to TEXAS and take our guns.... WE DARE YOU!!!!!” offered Jonathan McLain.

Roger Davenport presented a link to all of the 23 measures signed by Obama.

“Folks - I find NOTHING limiting gun ownership for legal owners,” Beckett said. “It’s about mental health, required background checks for all gun sales, and programs to raise awareness of gun violence and safety planning.”

Holly Adkisson was unconvinced.

“We have the right to protect ourselves and our home !!!!!” she said.

Micah Harris was among those worried Wednesday’s announcement was just the first step.

“It’s Obama’s goals that everyone is up in arms about,” Harris said. “If he could do more and get away with it, he would. They have made the first move. It’s time to draw our line in the sand.”

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