Letters 05.01.16

On Gun Control

Regarding “Does Catholic Faith Dictate a Position on Gun Control?” (Nation, Jan. 10 issue) and the statements of Mr. John Snyder of the St. Gabriel Possenti Society charging the U.S. bishops with being “just plain off the wall” because of their stand on gun control, I was appalled at the illogicality and the meanness of his approach. I cannot help but wonder whether Mr. Snyder even knows what hypocrisy is. Hypocrisy is defined in the dictionary that I consulted as “pretense of ... moral ... principles that one does not possess.” Is he saying that the position of the bishops regarding gun control is proof that they really are not pro-life? Or is he merely claiming that their gun-control position contradicts their position on pro-life issues? He seems to be saying the former. Mr. Snyder needs a lesson in respecting the rights of others to their opinions, while holding his own. He may be for so-called gun rights, but he seems to know nothing about the right to one’s own opinion. I have to add that I find the positions of the bishops in these matters as perfectly compatible.

         Gerald McAfee

         Gresham, Oregon


I’m writing with regard to the headline “Does Catholic Faith Dictate a Position on Gun Control?” in the Jan. 10, 2016, issue. To answer the question in the headline: No, the Catholic faith does not dictate a position on gun control. The Catholic faith dictates how to follow Jesus. It dictates that people do not murder in any way, shape or form. It dictates that Catholics are to serve as role models in society so that others will want to imitate us and follow Jesus. Although the murder of innocent people by firearms is terrible, I don’t understand why the focus is on the firearms. People are murdered by knives, cars, hammers, poison and many other objects. The object used is never the focus until it is a firearm. Focusing on firearms is an easy out for all of the politicians who have failed to keep the American citizens safe. And now it seems that even some Catholic leaders, like Archbishop Blase Cupich, have jumped on the bandwagon by using inflammatory comments like “turned our streets into battlefields.” We need to start focusing on the real problem, the change in our culture. Nobody wants to tackle the tougher problem of why our culture is now generating so many people willing to commit something as evil as mass murder. The Catholic faith should dictate questioning how our culture has changed.

        Bill Lebensorger

        Gurnee, Illinois