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Newsday letters to the editor for Monday, Dec. 18, 2017

Newsday readers respond to topics covered.

A protester dressed as the Bible rallies earlier

A protester dressed as the Bible rallies earlier this month against Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips outside the Supreme Court in Washington. Photo Credit: THEW/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock

Two sides debate concealed carry

In response to “Don’t see law-abiding citizens as criminals” [Letters, Dec. 10], while concealed carry is permitted in all states, the legal standard for doing so varies from state to state. Concealed Carry Reciprocity would force the 38 states with standards for training and background checks to accept the standards of the 12 that don’t. This lowers the bar for what is considered “law-abiding” and opens the opportunity for more dangerous people to carry hidden, loaded weapons on our streets.

For example, 35 states disqualify convicted misdemeanants from concealed carry, but 15 do not. This means that people convicted of violent misdemeanors may legally carry concealed weapons in those 15 states and would be able to do so in all states if CCR were to pass.

Likewise, training is required in 31 states, so under CCR, people holding concealed carry permits in the 19 other states would be legally allowed to carry concealed weapons in all states without training.

Many of the nation’s largest law-enforcement organizations and mayors across the country oppose CCR because it would make the job of law enforcement more difficult and dangerous, and would make our communities less safe.

A study by the nonprofit National Bureau of Economic Research shows that, when states weaken their concealed carry laws, violent crime rates rise by 13 to 15 percent.

Jeff Keister, Selden

Editor’s note: The writer is a volunteer with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, an advocacy organization.

I strongly disagree with Newsday’s Dec. 8 editorial concerning firearms [“Senate should defeat bill to ignore state gun laws”].

I’m in favor of the House bill that would allow those of us who possess a license to carry a concealed firearm to carry that firearm in every state.

Connecticut licensed me 28 years ago to carry a concealed firearm in that state, since I have a New York State license. I’m unaware of any problems in Connecticut involving non-resident licensees.

James G. Collins, Floral Park

Editor’s note: The writer is the Long Island director of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, an advocacy organization.

Wedding cake bakers should serve all

The U.S. Supreme Court is considering the case of a gay Colorado couple who are suing because a baker refused to make their wedding cake based on religious grounds [“Christian values are being marginalized,” Letters, Dec. 12].

Having lived through the 1960s, I remember businesses refusing to serve “colored” people. Many segregationists justified racial bigotry on biblical grounds. The Civil Rights Act put an end to that sort of discrimination.

Having a business requires you to perform a service for everyone. In many cases, we don’t agree with people or their lifestyle but that is the nature of doing business.

The Colorado couple wasn’t asking the baker to accept their lifestyle. They asked to buy a cake. Not accommodating them for this reason is discriminatory. It’s a waste of time and money for the Supreme Court to look at this, and it’s just another instance of the country regressing instead of progressing.

Paul Spina, Calverton

A recent letter writer claimed, “Christians are once again being marginalized.” He based this on a gay couple making “a national issue” out of a baker’s refusal to make their wedding cake.

Is he referring to Christian values as bigotry, prejudice and hatred?

Diana Clingan, Mineola

King should go, along with Steve Bannon

The fact that Peter King referred to the recent special U.S. Senate election as an “Alabama disaster” as part of his push to oust Steve Bannon from influence suggests that maybe King should follow [“King: Dump Bannon,” News, Dec. 14].

A loss by an alleged pedophile who suggests America was great during the times of slavery is hardly a disaster. It’s a victory for decency and sense over partisan politics. Bannon has to go. So does King.

David Shaw, Valley Stream

Corruption leads to watchdog expense

So Nassau County government begrudgingly decides to compromise on an inspector general position, and the Town of Oyster Bay takes up the idea as well [“Town delays vote on IG,” News, Dec. 13].

I’m wondering why we must always make knee-jerk political appointments to solve basic operational problems. If contract management is a problem, maybe we should start hiring competent people and not make wholesale partisan sweep-outs and sweep-ins.

Set intelligent, transparent processes, hire good people, manage them appropriately and there would be little need for watchdogs, whistleblowers or ethics panels. Conversely, in our broken, corrupt system, we need watchdogs and whistleblowers. This is precisely why nothing gets done, approval levels of elected officials are in the toilet and voter apathy is through the roof.

Mike Margulis, Hempstead