Disturbing Situation…

Dear Editor,

The article (Reader 8/25) on the loaded handgun left behind at Foster’s Crossing is disturbing on several levels. A mother of several children was the first to find the loaded handgun. What if one of her children were the first to find the handgun? What if someone from ISIS found the handgun?

Seriously, I am bothered about why the gunowner felt the need to have the loaded weapon in an antique store in the first place.

I am bothered that the gunowner’s identity is not revealed. This person gets to hide behind a shield of anonymity while potentially threatening the safety of the entire Sandpoint community.

I am bothered that there is greater concern about which bathroom transgender people can use while a loaded handgun can be left unattended in a public bathroom with no repercussions to the negligent handgun owner.

Finally, I am bothered by the statement of Sandpoint Police Chief Corey Coon when he says that the “best defense against a tragic [gun] accident” is for “open and concealed carriers to keep an alert mind.” No disrespect intended to the police chief, but I suggest that no guns, open or concealed, is the best defense against a tragic gun accident. Just think back several years ago to the mother who was shot by her two-year-old son in the Hayden Wal-mart. After the Wal-mart incident, the deceased mother’s father was quoted as saying that she was a responsible gun owner. This might be true, but she is and remains a dead responsible gun owner.

What are my rights as a non-gun owner? Do I have the right, say, to walk into a Sandpoint antique store to go shopping and not be concerned that someone might walk out of the restroom with a loaded handgun that was forgotten by its owner?

Possibly the only connection between “rights” and “responsbility” is that both words begin with the letter “r.”

Jim Healey

P.S. Thanks to the Reader for bringing this potentially “tragic” story to the attention of the Sandpoint community. This is something that the major newpaper in town has neglected to do (as of Sunday, August 28).

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