Monday, August 10, 2015

A letter published in THE BALTIMORE SUN/A letter submitted to THE BALTIMORE SUN for publication

July 29, 2015

When will gun manufacturers be held liable for the death their products cause?

I am a cinema buff, and I went to the Charles Theatre recently to see a wonderful film. While there I realized that another mentally ill person decided to vent his furies in a movie theater. This time in Lafayette, La. ("La. shooter a drifter with 'hate in his heart,'" July 25). This is the USA, a country awash with more guns than people, so shootings are inevitable.

And of course, our elected officials will do nothing to end the daily gun carnage. They will pontificate that it is the fault of another "bad person." In the latest mass shooting, it should be noted that John Russell Houser, who was presumably mentally ill, bought the gun "legally" at an Alabama pawn shop.

In order to stop the carnage, why not indict the sellers and manufacturers of the guns used in homicides? These parties are culpable for the resultant deaths and injuries.

It is inevitable, however, that another time bomb will go off in the near future, but the legislators will still do nothing to quell the gun violence. When I next go to a theater to see another movie, I hope the setting is a gun-free zone.

Max Obuszewski, Baltimore

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun

Aug. 8, 2015

Apt. 206, 431 Notre Dame Lane, Baltimore, MD 21212
Letters to the Editor

Dear friend:

As one of the organizers of Baltimore’s 31st annual Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemorations, I was pleased to see the photograph of Takako Chiba on the front page in “Summary of the News,” {The Baltimore Sun, August 7, 2015.]  However, the article “Two Hiroshima survivors visit city and call for peace” was a journalistic failure.  

When I send out a press release, it contains the Who, What, When, Where and Why.  Someone reading the article about the Hiroshima survivors could have assumed the visitors stumbled upon a demonstration.  Actually the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemoration Committee has been bringing Hibakusha [survivors of the atomic bomb] to Baltimore for decades.  

Where we gathered was essential to the article.  We were there outside Johns Hopkins University to protest the university’s weapons contracts.  JHU’s Applied Physics Laboratory has done research on mass murder weapons and killer drones, for example.  The APL budget is about $1 billion, and these are tax dollars better spent on improving Baltimore’s sagging infrastructure.  Of course, we were there to call for the abolition of nuclear weapons, but also for the closure of all nuclear power plants.  

Our commemoration will continue on August 9, the day an atomic bomb struck Nagasaki.  At that event we will discuss the death of Freddie Gray, the Black Lives Matter movement and possible solutions to Baltimore’s many ills.

As a long-time subscriber to THE BALTIMORE SUN, I have been impressed by the newspaper’s work during the trying times of the Internet era.  However, there is always room for improvement.  As the Hibakusha say NEVER AGAIN, please.                             


Max Obuszewski is with the Baltimore Nonviolence Center


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