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February 7, 2013 at 7:00 AM

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Oak Harbor City Council meeting includes armed attendees

First Amendment also needs consideration

I understand that there are passionate opinions on both sides concerning checking guns at the door at city council meetings [“Packing guns, packing City Hall,” page one, Feb. 6]. What I don’t understand is the people who yell about their Second Amendment rights, who believe they are entitled to demand the resignation of Councilman Rick Almberg for exercising his First Amendment right (to express his opinion).

This is an illustration of what the councilman was trying to express, that those with guns may appear to “bully” those without. I would be uncomfortable being in a position to publicly debate what is in the best interest of my community, knowing that someone who held the irrational belief that I should not be allowed to hold a public office if I disagree with them was in the room with me, armed and angry.

--Dawn Dorsett, Bellevue

Guns should be allowed in city parks

I have not gone to a park in years, for fear of my life and security. Parks are high-crime turfs where lawless children roam.

I am glad the good people of Oak Harbor armed themselves and convinced their City Council to allow guns in parks. I mean, why deprive some folks of their security blanket just because they want to enjoy some greenery?

--James Behrend, Bainbridge Island

Armed attendees unknowingly work against Second Amendment

Lucas Yonkman, in appearing at a public meeting with a hidden gun and then saying, “The American people should be very careful about messing with the Second Amendment,” was threatening the Oak Harbor City Council about as subtly as a shakedown man squeezing a store owner by saying, “Is that smoke I smell?”

It worked, but ironically, it’s Yonkman and all the other similarly armed attendees who are messing with the Second Amendment. Their actions intimate that they want unfettered freedom to all weaponry and all ammunition, free to carry their guns wherever and however they like, yet the Second Amendment empowers government to regulate the keepers and bearers of arms.

I hate to break it to Lucas Yonkman, but he’s a construction company owner, not a police officer, and no longer a soldier. He should know that even the military does not allow all of its personnel to carry loaded guns at all times.

President Obama is not trying to take away anyone’s guns, and most of the American people support his modest regulatory proposals. The Oak Harbor City Council should, too.

--Tim Walsh, Seattle

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