Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Be part of a less violent world

From page A8 | December 12, 2013 | 4 Comments

Violence is personal, it is sudden and permanent. After the movie hero “solves” the problem with a gun, real-life wounds never completely heal.

My niece was held at gunpoint in New York this year. That violence did not turn lethal, but it has here. William Gardner should not have had a gun when he confronted Leslie Pinkston. Some would say he could not have been reasonably prevented from getting one. But it was the idea of “solving” his problem with a gun — that idea is our problem.

Our local tragedy is hard to talk about; domestic violence is complicated. I’m grateful that Debra DeAngelo and others have stepped forward to offer a continuing conversation about domestic violence.

A gun never was going to solve the problem between Leslie and William. There is and always would be a daughter to raise, a family to heal, law enforcement to reflect and do better, and us — a community that needs to participate in creating a less violent world instead of quietly accepting the “inevitable.”

On Saturday, in part to quietly remember the anniversary of the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the Yolo Brady Campaign will be present at the Davis Farmers Market to provide a place for people to make quiet reflection, take quiet action and become part of the voice for a less violent world.

Scott Ragsdale


Letters to the Editor


Discussion | 4 comments

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  • Noreen MazelisDecember 12, 2013 - 2:14 pm

    What if Leslie had a handgun and knew how to use it effectively? There are some people, e.g., the William Gardners of this world, who can only be stopped by force of arms. Think about this, Scott Ragsdale, as you and the rest of the Brady Bunch, rabbit on about "quiet action" and your real agenda, i.e., to deprive us of arms with which to defend ourselves.

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  • Rich RifkinDecember 12, 2013 - 10:44 pm

    In the specifics of this particular murder, where she had no idea what he was about to do, her having a gun, even a loaded gun in her hand, would have done her no good, unless his gun had misfired and she could have pointed that loaded gun at him and killed him first (like in a movie). He clearly surprised her, walking up to her SUV from his van which was parked across the street (west of Steady Eddy's). ……… If you insist on dreaming up defense mechanisms, however, what might have saved her life in this case would have been bullet proof windows on her BMW (which I would guess you can order). I happened to ride into Winters shortly after the murder took place that Monday morning. Her vehicle was still there on Railroad Avenue, surrounded by police. Onlookers were gathered across the street. A helicopter was flying overhead. It was plainly visible, seeing her SUV, where the bullets had shattered the driver's side window. So I suppose bullet proof glass might have stopped this attack.

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  • Scott RagsdaleDecember 13, 2013 - 8:06 am

    I think it's pretty clear that depriving people of guns is a non-starter. I can't speak for the Yolo Brady Campaign officially, but in my view Brady does attempt to address the violence mongering that is perpetuated by irresponsible, abusive and sometimes deadly aspects of the gun ownership culture. And we may disagree with those that argue for unrestrained gun ownership about the effectiveness of citizens participating in armed combat to solve problems, but we are not out to take guns away from responsible people who understand the extreme measure they own.

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  • E. KatzDecember 12, 2013 - 7:03 pm

    Scott, as a neighbor who shares your views about the necessity to forsake the notion of violence (and/or guns) as a solution, I want to applaud your letter. Also, as a victim of an incident like the one your niece suffered (mine also obviously & happily non-lethal), which even now -- many decades later -- affects my life, I want to thank you for speaking out.

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