Question Legislation


Mary Carpenter

Mariposa California: the paternal grandmother of two children brutally stabbed to death with a pitchfork inside their rural Merced home on Aug. 23, 2000 demands that we stop passing gun control laws that empower murderers.

The Mariposa Gazette is one of the oldest, continually-published newspapers in the US. The editor confirmed to me that the following letter appeared in the April 5, 2001 issue.

Harry Schneider, Chairman, Pennsylvania Sportsmen’s Association

I am writing to alert my fellow Mariposans to something going on at the state level that should be far more frightening to you than the so called “energy crisis.” We must remember our legislators have a tendency to use such media hogging items to conceal their dirty legislation. SB52 and AB35 will require you to be fingerprinted, pay an unlimited fee, pass a written firearms law test, pass a shooting proficiency test, pass a hand gun handling demonstration exam, require notification of address change (just like a registered sex offender), pay fees that begin in the $40 to $50 range going as high as $100 or more, and comply with various loaning and transferring laws in order to own a handgun.

And what if you do not pass these tests?

I am the paternal grandmother of the two children brutally stabbed to death with a pitchfork inside their rural Merced home on Aug. 23, 2000. Although there were sufficient guns in the house for my granddaughters to defend themselves and their siblings, because of my son’s willingness to comply with California State law, two of his children are dead.

(Had the girls been able to get to the gun, by California law, my son would have been charged with a felony.)

If it had not been for my nine-year-old granddaughter’s willingness to sacrifice her life for her siblings, four of them would be dead. The man who killed them was a stranger to the family and though not on drugs at the time, was a known drug abuser. He had recently been arrested for assaulting a police officer and was on parole because of jail overcrowding. (Yet they would have room for me should I fail my test and refuse to give them my gun.)

The killer had already violated his parole. The police knew his address. They knew where his mother and grandmother lived. He had mental records. His wife had reported that he had kidnapped her and held her at gunpoint in 1997. She had more recently reported he left threatening messages on her answering machine. Yet my son would have been in more trouble had his 14 or 13 year-old daughters been able to get to his gun. How safe will we be against these predators if they know we are not armed?

Please think about it, and call your legislators today.