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Community Forum: Gun control won't solve border drug trafficking
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The anti-gun verbiage that was said by Ruben Navarrette in his "Narco Nafta" article Tuesday was horribly inaccurate. For starters, he stated that there were plenty of Americans who would sell AK-47s and grenade-launchers to drug traffickers.

Grenade-launchers are not available to the general public. You cannot walk into any gun store and buy a grenade-launcher.

Secondly, he talks of the Belgian pistol that is a must-have because it will fire cop-killer bullets. Well, all guns can do that. What he is talking about is a particular type of bullet, most of which are illegal to Joe American.

Oh, and let's not forget that AK-47s. Not many full auto AK's are sold to the general public. (Yes, they are legal). The drug dealers are getting most of these from Central America. Yes, you can modify them to be fully automatic. Yes, this is illegal. Once the firearm is automatic then it is an assault weapon.

Semi-automatic AK-47s and AR-15s are inaccurately being called assault weapons. They are not assault weapons, just copies of them. The assault weapons ban did not ban these weapons. It only made certain features illegal. You could still buy an AK-47 or AR-15 during the ban.

However, because of the name of the ban, people are being lied to and think it stopped the selling of certain firearms. The ban never stopped the selling of semi-automatic AK-47s and AR-15s. Another ban would be useless.

I will agree that every aspect of the drug dealers' industry is illegal. What makes him think they will care if troops are on the border? Many of us have been screaming to close the border for years. Well, I'm glad he finally is starting to catch up to the rest of us.

The bottom line is it does not matter what is in your hand, it is what is in your heart. If you intend to harm another you will, you will find a way. If you do not intend to harm others, you will not. It would not even matter if you have a tank.

You are wrong, Mr. Navarrette; this IS about gun control. This is a free country. If you do not want a gun, do not buy one. However, do not trample my rights when I have done nothing wrong. Do not trample the rights of law-abiding Americans.

Larry Payne

Derrer will serve well
Forsyth County is indeed fortunate to have signed Doug Derrer as its new county manager.

I particularly remember Mr. Derrer as always being knowledgeable about whatever position he held in Hall County Government. At budget time his preparation was always concise and requests were well presented and justifiable.

Bruce W. Hallowell

Execs earn bonuses while others suffer
As the news broke last week about the AIG bonus payouts, the very first thing that came to mind was Woody Guthrie's famous "Ballad of Pretty Boy Floyd" "... Some men will rob you with a six-gun, and some with a fountain pen."

While the lawless freebooters at AIG collect millions of taxpayer dollars for their dishonesty, we here in Georgia and elsewhere have cut the pay and laid off many of our police, firefighters and EMS personnel.

Furthermore, hundreds of thousands of our enlisted military personnel are forced to rely upon food stamps to feed their families.
How in the name of justice can we pay huge bonuses to the very people who created this economic collapse and ask our brave emergency and military personnel to risk their lives to protect us?

This is patently unjust. It is downright nauseating and utterly intolerable. We call upon President Barack Obama and the Congress to do whatever is necessary to get these bonuses back and to prosecute all the bankers and financiers whose malfeasance caused the collapse of our economy.

We further call upon the administration to make available all funds necessary to restore the full salaries of our public safety personnel and increase the pay of our enlisted military personnel to a sustainable level.

Bill Kinsland
Sautee Nacoochee

The 535 control all for their benefit, not ours
Does the number 535 mean anything to you? It should. It's the number of people who rule your world. The number of people it took to ruin our economy. The number of men and women who regulate, tax or subsidize everything. It's the policymakers. It's Congress.

I believe every problem in our economy can be traced back to those 535 people.

I'm no economist but sometimes all it takes is common sense. Look at the car industry; it's been regulated beyond repair. Congress imposes unreasonable emissions, fuel economy and crash standards with no knowledge on how to implement them.

They tighten restrictions while giving more power to the unions. The manufactures were bound to fail. No company can survive with Congress so involved.

Then we have the banks. They had a method in place to determine who was a good credit risk. Congress did not like this; there were voters not getting loans, so they forced the banks to lower their credit standards and give loans to people who did not qualify. This policy rolled over into the housing market.

People who should have never gotten a loan got one. Is it their fault? Not necessarily. Some thought they were qualified and that the banks were honest about what they could afford. Little did they know that Congress was forcing those banks, plus Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, to make the loans. Now they are all bankrupt and Congress doesn't understand why.

Congress thinks we should support the world when we can't even support ourselves. We are trillions in debt yet we are still sending billions out of our country. We are broke, yet Congress will not dare cut an "entitlement" program.

The one thing Congress should be working on is immigration, it ignores it. We have 25 million illegal immigrants in our country and Congress will do nothing. In fact they force us, the taxpayers, to provide schooling, food and health care for these people, and now they want us to give them Social Security. I could go on but I think you get my point.

These 535 people have no business sense to dictate standards by which businesses should be run; 535 who work for their own benefit and have not only gotten away with it, they've gotten rich off of it. They demonize the CEOs while taking kickbacks from those same companies.

They think we are incapable of educating our children, purchasing health care and providing for our own retirement. Their solution is a failing school system, an overloaded Medicare system and a Social Security system that resembles a "Ponzi" scheme.

Yet, members have their own private retirement fund and health insurance. They get automatic yearly pay raises while the rest of us have to "earn" it.

We vote these people into office to obey and enforce our laws, not to change the laws as needed to cover up their mistakes. We expect them to conduct themselves in an honorable fashion, not become rich off of the power they hold. We expect them to do what WE want, not make back room deals with the lobbyist.

We expect honesty. We deserve better. It's time Congress admits it has failed!

Kellie Weeks