Sensible gun laws

In the face of a public safety crisis here and in cities across the state, Mayor Nutter and members of City Council believe that some commonsense responsibilities should be tied by law to gun ownership ("Nutter makes a Harrisburg push," May 28). There are legal issues, of course, but there are far broader ones as well:

Philadelphia was granted "home rule" by the state. It ought to have the right to exercise that power when it comes to firearms.

If the legislature continues to abdicate its statewide responsibility, it should at least allow Philadelphia to protect its own citizens.

Some of the laws at the center of the current legal battle aren't about gun ownership, but the ability of lawmakers to reasonably regulate behavior, such as reporting a lost or stolen weapon.

In November, voters will have a chance to evaluate the candidates for most of the seats in the General Assembly. Ask them this simple question: What will you do to protect us from further violence?

Zachary Stalberg


The Committee of Seventy


RFK remarks

I see no logical connection between Hillary Clinton's reference to a historical event (the unfortunate slaying of a white senator) and a loss of hope in the future for minorities ("Assassination is a sensitive topic for many," May 29). Nor can I imagine why anyone was offended. Had Clinton made a joking reference to the assassination of a black candidate, that would be a different matter.

I also dispute George Curry's conclusion that we live in a "sick society" because a tiny minority of racist fools would actually consider it a noble act to assassinate a black presidential candidate.

We have little time to waste on overly sensitive misinterpretations of Clinton's remarks or unduly negative views of American attitudes. We should spend our days worrying about substantive issues and continue to work toward the day when racism will be but a distant memory.

John M. Baxter

Newtown Square


Not offensive?

How anyone who is a rational thinker would not be offended by Hillary Clinton's statement on the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy is beyond me (Letters, May 28). There are any number of analogies she could have used, but she chose an assassination analogy. The words of the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. didn't come out of Barack Obama's mouth. But the assassination comment did come out of Clinton's.

I used to really respect the Clintons. Even after the scandal and humiliation we Americans suffered during the 1990s, I still had admiration for them. However, during this primary I have seen them in a totally different light, and it's not pretty.

I would love to see a woman president one day, but that woman is not Clinton. Why do people think she is so much more qualified than Obama? Because she was first lady for eight years? Give me a break.

Marcia Gauthney


Unworthy source

The murderer of a police officer hangs himself at a state prison ("Officer's killer, on death row, commits suicide," May 29). That's somewhat newsworthy and I grieve for his family and that of the murdered officer. Then, for some reason known only to God and the editor, The Inquirer sees fit to interview another murderer of a police officer (name withheld so as not to give this self-aggrandizing creep yet more publicity) and get his "take" on it. Who cares what he thinks?

Publicity-seeking death-row murderers of police officers are now trusted Inquirer "sources"? That's wrong. That's sickening. And it's certainly not journalism.

Paul Decker

Bryn Mawr

Leave Scouts alone

As an Order of the Arrow member and a former assistant scoutmaster, I wish to voice my complete disagreement with Eric Eckstein in regard to the Boy Scouts and homosexuality ("The Boy Scouts need to wise up, or they'll lose out," May 29). The Scouts have flourished for many years with no intrusion by Big Brother, and they certainly do not need it now. If Philadelphia officials want to perform a good deed, let them stop the murders, clean the streets, lower the wage tax, and get off the Scouts' back.

Bill Hinski