Ready, fire, aim

Published 4:48 pm Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Some never seem to get things in the right order. In their rush to do something or to appease some group, they tend to make matters worse.

This great proclamation was clearly done for one purpose only. That purpose was payback to the former billionaire mayor of New York City for contributing $2 million dollars to the governor’s favorite candidates in the past November election.

It was, as well, an opportunity to gain favor for Bloomberg to fund the candidacy of Hillary Clinton, for her run for the presidency.

If there was any concern about the safety of our citizens, the governor would have spent the time and effort to analyze where in this country mass attacks have occurred. For the most part, those attacks have come at locations that have rules or laws barring guns.   

Thus, the issue of armed or unarmed may be a false narrative. In each of those cases, it was clear that there would be no one at the ready to defend the innocent. They would be at the mercy or lack of mercy to an attacker.

If the issue that is to be addressed is the safety of those innocent people, then it would be far wiser to have those responsible citizens who know how and have been trained in the use of firearms. Some would advocate this requires more law enforcement officers.

Many of us believe that it justifies allowing those citizens who have proven themselves to be of good character and have been properly trained in the use of firearms to carry weapons.

The private citizen with a legally concealed weapon, however, is much harder to identify. Is it wiser to train people to cower and hope for the best or to learn to be prepared?

The other outstanding issue in these cases are that many of them have mental illness issues.  After the killings at Virginia Tech, the general assembly focused better on how to prevent those with problems from buying weapons.

We found that there was a major problem in that the State Police background checks were not receiving mental health reports.  We were successful in that effort, but that does not mean that all problems have been solved.

As we saw in the case of Sen. Creigh Deeds’ son, getting a weapon is not always an issue of legally buying a gun.

The bottom line is that we, as law abiding citizens, have a right to own a gun. Whether it is to hunt or to protect our families and those around us. That right should not be taken away simply because others do not like it.

Nor should it be taken away under the misguided belief that the government can protect us.

Frank Ruff, a Republican, represents Lunenburg County in the Virginia State Senate. His email address is