President must

defer to Congress

On Jan. 16, President Barack Obama announced 23 executive actions to deal with gun violence, vowing to use "whatever weight the office holds" to promote his agenda.

Again, the president takes the position of a monarch and not that of president of the United States, where his primary duty is to ask Congress to debate his recommendations and the issues and hopefully pass into law what would make good common sense. Our republic doesn't work the way the president would like it to work. As a constitutional scholar he certainly should know better.

The underlying issue is that the president is targeting the Second Amendment rights of all law-abiding citizens and really not getting into the real problem of the individuals who are in desperate need of medical help and who are ignored and allowed to remain on the street.

Until we put teeth into our mental health laws, nothing can be done to stop the carnage. Additional police will do nothing to correct the problem.

Consider the recent subway deaths in New York City, the school shooting by a mentally disturbed individual in Connecticut, the shooting of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the July shootings at a Colorado theater. In each case, someone considered to have a mental disorder was allowed to be free to invoke pain and trauma.

LOUIS C. RIPA

Ocean City

Gun laws only affect

law-abiding citizens

Regarding the Jan. 17 story, "Obama gun reform plan stirs praise, scorn locally":

When will our representatives learn? The only ones affected by gun laws are the law-abiding citizens. Stricter gun-control laws do two things: Boost the economy by increasing sales of firearms because people see their rights being carved away, and put more guns out there.

How many law-abiding citizens go on a shooting rampage? Yes, you can do a background check, but last time I checked, medical records are privileged information. Unless a doctor knows his patient is getting ready to commit a crime, he can't give information out.

Make everyone more knowledgeable about the people around them and more aware of their surroundings. This will help reduce the killings. And by the way, no legal requirement will force criminals to register their guns.

PATRICK M. MATTHEWS

Galloway Township

Replace politicians,

•ot our gun rights

Evil has no boundaries and follows no laws.

Guns can ruin a life, take a life, or protect a life. They can, as with so many other dangerous items of our society, become a tool of damnation or salvation. It's all related to the operator.

When any horrible act is committed with a gun, there will be people who wish guns didn't exist or could be controlled. No one wants to be on the losing end of gun statistics, but looking to government for a cure is like driving with your eyes closed. If you think the Constitution and its amendments are outdated, not only do I know how you drive, I know you are not a good student of history.

Our Constitution is the law of the land, but our politicians are like children playing a game. They want to change the laws and bend the rules to keep themselves in power, with the false promise that what they are doing is going to better society and keep us safe. A free people will never give up their arms, but they will give up their politicians.

JOE DeROSE

Cape May Court House