Bob Mitchell: Our freedoms are threatened

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Perhaps Monday, July 4, Independence Day, will be a good time to reflect not only how fortunate we are to live in this nation of freedoms, but additionally, what we are going to do to continue what we have enjoyed for so many years.


Recent incidents, including the one in Orlando, Fla., should make it clear to any thinking person that this type of incident and killings of groups or individuals must cease. It doesn't make any difference where these killings are taking place, or who is behind the senseless slaughter, for the most part the weapons being used have no business being in the hands of anyone outside the military when they are engaged in combat.

What few friends I might have in the NRA or their followers will immediately take issue with my opinion, and that is their right to do so, but if thinking people will set aside some ideological or political opinions, I believe most people will acknowledge something needs to be done, and this is as good a first approach that might be on the books.

Back to WWII

Few of today's generations are aware of the steps this country took during World War II after the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor. In steps to protect the American people throughout the country, and especially on the western states, Japanese citizens were assembled in camps, whether they were American citizens or not. This disgraceful situation was thought to be the best solution to protect both American lives and important facilities.

In many cases, these people were important business owners who never got their property back at the end of the war. As distasteful as this move by our government might have seemed at the time, it was one that was seen as a necessity after the wanton attack on the United States.

Later into WWII, some of these same Japanese young men became members of the Armed Forces and fought bravely in various branches of the service. Especially in the Pacific Theater, they proved their worth in being able to speak the enemy's language.

See any difference?

Since school textbooks of today don't tell this story for present generations to make a comparison, they won't have the opportunity to determine between all-out war and piecemeal incidents that take the lives of American citizens. American involvements in the Far East probably would give cause for some beliefs to seek actions against use inside the borders of our country.

Using their people, who have come here by the good graces of the United States, is their answer of allegiance and a precipitation of a Near East way of life that cannot be tolerated. If it takes drastic measures by this nation to put a stop to these actions, then let them come down the pike.

Permitting weapons intended for slaughtering scores of people in a single incident to be on the streets is only one method of putting at end or decreasing these incidents.

There is no telling how many of these type weapons have been sold, but, if only these guns, nothing else, are eliminated, it will send a message and possibly make the misuse of them at least become less frequent.

Today's killings are nothing short of war. Stopping these shootings is not going to be settled at any peace table.

Eat less, think more

Here we are near the 240th birthday of the United States with Monday's Independence Day celebration. For many, it will be just another Monday holiday, but for many of us, it's time to hang out the flag of the United States and load the vehicle with baked beans, potato salad, hot dogs, buns and a favorite beverage and head for Table Rock Lake, Roaring River State Park, or to a friend's house to enjoy the holiday.

If you have read anything into the above column, then just take a few moments to think about where this country is today and where she will go in the future.

The framers of the American Constitution, which separated us from England, did so at great risk to themselves and their families. Again, our educational system doesn't go into these historical facts much, but those men suffered greatly for doing what they thought would be best for this new nation. Whether today's society would walk in their shoes could be questionable the way we are sometimes led in directions that are not always in the best interest of the public.

America has overcome some of the most serious domestic and overseas instances to be in existence for 240 years. Whether she will be around for another 2-1/2 centuries depends on what we do today.

Bob Mitchell is the former editor and publisher of the Cassville Democrat.