Cleveland newspaper rolls out more tired arguments in editorial opposing restaurant carry legislation

By Gerard Valentino and Larry S. Moore

The Cleveland Plain Dealer Editorial Page is a perfect example of the old cliché about insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

In their most recent anti-gun rant titled, "Ohio Senate should bury bill to permit concealed weapons in bars" they are speaking out against a bill that makes Ohio's concealed carry law less restrictive.

Over the years, The Cleveland Plain Dealer has used the same tired arguments to oppose every single pro-gun bill introduced in the legislature.

True to form, they are falling back on the tired old argument that guns and alcohol don't mix. Conveniently, the Plain Dealer editorial board leaves out relevant facts, and as always they use a lot of bold words, without bold logic, or a substantial argument.

Pointing out how many times The Cleveland Plain Dealer has been wrong on the gun issue is making pro-gun advocates sound like broken records. Since, just like every other pro-gun bill they've opposed, a little research would force them to rethink their position. As with past pro-gun bills, states bordering Ohio have already enacted similar laws without a subsequent public safety risk.

But, if The Plain Dealer actually researched the issue, they wouldn't be able to justify years of advocating gun control. So, they have a vested interest in their ignorance because it allows them to retain their self-righteous anti-gun bias.

If they admit the truth, it requires them to report honestly and concede that permissive gun laws are the right policy.

To bolster their anti-gun ravings, The Plain Dealer threw in a different twist by claiming that the Ohio Senate should spend time working on the 11% unemployment rate plaguing the state instead of spending time on gun rights.

While the basis for the argument hasn't been used since the 2003 fight to pass Ohio's concealed carry law, the theory that gun issues aren't important is not new at all. Anti-gun groups have claimed that gun rights advocates are a small but vocal minority that bullies legislators to push gun bills at the expense of all others. Their argument completely ignores the huge gun-owning population in America.

What the anti-gun forces fail to realize, or won't admit, is that without the right to self-defense, all other rights are meaningless. A great job is useless if you're not alive to enjoy it. And all of your nice possessions are only as safe as the lock on your door if you can't protect them. The sad fact is that without the right to bear arms, all the trappings of wealth are merely on loan and for the taking by predators in society.

From their ivory tower, it is easy for the Plain Dealer editorial board to preach at everyman instead of coming down and living in the real world.

There is one place where The Cleveland Plain Dealer hit the nail on the head, however, and that is where they called pro-gun advocates "insatiable." We are insatiable and will only quit when every law abiding citizen has the ability to exercise their right to keep and bear arms as they see fit, and can carry a gun without fear of harassment and without worrying about accidentally breaking the law.

Unlike the elitists on the Plain Dealer editorial board who tend to be more propagandists than journalists, gun rights advocates believe that every Ohioan should be able to decide if they want to own a gun and carry it for self-defense. We are the champions of choice and want to see families in the inner city live free from the fear that comes with knowing only the gang bangers in the neighborhood are armed.

We are working to return the right to keep and bear arms to the elderly couple who have become prisoners in their own home because their longtime neighborhood has been taken over by crack dealers. While the anti-gun community might accept that such a couple can't walk to the bus stop safely, gun advocates think we can do better.

The best tool ever devised to even the odds for honest law abiding citizens in the firearm. Only when guns are taken away from the people can criminals thrive and truly control a community.

What people on the wrong side of the gun issue will never admit is that if the gun lobby demands were ever met the following would be true:

  • Violent crime would be reduced
  • People wouldn't have to live in a state of fear of criminal attack
  • The world would be a safer place
  • The number of innocent victims of violent crime would be greatly reduced
  • Violent criminals, the small percentage committing 80 percent of the crimes, would be shot dead. No touchy-feely rehab program putting them back out on the streets to murder, rape, and assault more innocent victims.
  • Cities and states wouldn't have to spend millions of dollars prosecuting, jailing, and "rehabbing" violent offenders because they would have been shot dead trying to commit their violent acts.
  • Criminals would fear their victims and resort to property crimes
  • My family would be safer
  • I could spend more time with my family
  • It would be a fundamental shift in society from relying on government to being self-reliant.

In striving for our goals, we are insatiable, and have to be because as long as The Cleveland Plain Dealer continues to push its anti-gun bias, we have to fight. However, if by some happenstance the right to keep and bear arms is returned to the people and our goals are attained, we will gladly go home.

Additional Information:
To the Editor: Ohio's law-abiding concealed-carry holders won't mix alcohol and guns

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