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Revenge porn? Really?
Wow. The Indy must really be hard up for stories to give the front page to someone as deluded and narcissistic as Craig Brittain ("The face of revenge," cover story, Jan 9). Revenge porn? Jesus H. Christ. I must be living under a rock.
And I quote, "I thought Brutus was a cool guy. He's like, 'Caesar, you were cool. You were my boy, but you fucked me over. So now I'm going to stab you.'" Stunning coverage, Indy.
That he was on NPR, not to mention that KRDO is interested in him, is just so far beyond my comprehension.
"And I'll be like, 'You know, I used to be a famous celebrity. Here I am in your English class, and I used to be somebody famous.'" And that's what it all boils down to for losers such as Craig — getting your 15 minutes of fame. And thanks to the folks at the Colorado Springs Independent, among others, he has just that. Any more scumbags you can scrape up for us?
— Christopher Curcio
Don't encourage them
Good grief, Indy! An article exposing the damage done by revenge porn? Fine. But you heaped tons of attention on a person who traffics in people's misery. And to top it off, you publish his picture on the front page.
It reminds me of the absurdity of newspapers decrying the offense of graffiti, then publishing pictures of the damage. Please don't encourage behavior that harms community.
— Judith Lee
Oh Chet Hardin, I hope they gave you hazard pay for having to sit through a conversation with that moronic sociopath, Craig Brittain. I thank you for doing the valuable service of posting so many pics of him. Now one of his victims may have the opportunity of exacting their own revenge. We can only hope! What goes around comes around.
— Valerie Croke
The article on Craig Brittain takes on special meaning when viewed in light of recent events. Young male, not confident in relationships (particularly with women), failed attempt at a high-profile career (rapper). Then there is this quote: "I do things that people may see as morally ambiguous, but I have a greater goal in mind."
In a way, I guess, we are lucky. He picked up a mouse for his vile purposes. It could have been an AR-15.
— Niel Powers
Politically I'm a radical leftist, but I own a Galil .223 semi-automatic assault rifle with six 35-round magazines. I also have a Beretta 9mm semi-automatic pistol and six 15-round magazines. I have a 20-gauge shotgun, a .38 special snubnose revolver, and a .357.
I keep everything in a thousand-pound gun safe. I've taken a gun safety class and have had half a dozen background checks. I can handle a gun safely, and hope I never so much as point one at another human. The point being that I take my guns seriously.
The Supreme Court has broadly interpreted the Second Amendment as protecting an individual's right to possess firearms disassociated from any militia. This is a fait accompli, but any right must be balanced against its danger to society; society in turn has a right to expect some personal responsibility from the rightholder.
Unfortunately this is lacking in the current gun-control discussions. Closing gun-show loopholes or banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines will only do so much. In my view, there are three more steps to reducing gun violence:
1. The federal government should sponsor a buyback and general amnesty. If you possess a gun, legally or otherwise, you can sell it to the government for fair market value, no questions asked, no identification required. The one-time cost of such a program could be in the tens of billions, but some studies estimate the economic losses due to gun injuries and deaths in this country are also in the tens of billions — annually.
2. After a year-long buyback program, require that all firearms be registered in a national database. If you get caught with an unregistered gun, it's a felony.
3. If a gun registered to you is used in a gun crime, you will be subject to criminal charges.
— Ian Flesher
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa is generally considered to be one of the few elected moderate Republicans and a good sheriff, so even though I'm a non-gun-carrying Democrat, without a child in the schools, I'm willing to consider his plan for guns in the county's schools (see "No silver bullet," p. 11).
Of course, the flies in the ointment of arming teachers and administrators are not only a teacher or principal losing it, or shooting kids in the crossfire, or a kid getting his hands on such a gun, but someone with a gun overreacting to a self-perceived crisis.
Still, if I was a Colorado state legislator, I would propose a bill allowing selected school personnel to carry a gun in the schools in any county where two-thirds of the public in the county precinct voted in favor of it, allowing individual schools in a precinct to opt out by petition at any time if more than one-third of the parents in a school were against it. In addition, teachers already at these schools should have the freedom to transfer without penalty when possible if they so choose.
— Jonathan H. Reilly
For many decades I have occasionally enjoyed the increasingly violent activity of football. However, I am reducing this violence in my life by refusing to watch any longer. With this conscious act I continue to remind myself of my values for friendship and peaceful solutions to my life. It is almost like uttering a prayer.
I have always enjoyed movies but I am avoiding needlessly violent ones.
I will continue to strive to make my grandchildren aware of destructive video games and other acts of mayhem.
I cannot do much about atrocities in my nation, but I can help myself and influence what happens in my family.
— Dale L. Kemmerer, M.D.
Defending to the death
To all the people "sheep," who mistakenly believe that our government and our leaders will never subject us to tyranny, remember Hitler, Stalin and Mao Tse-tung promised their people that they would be treated fairly, protected, fed and ruled fairly. Then they took all weapons — hunting, sport or self-defense — away for the safety of all.
If our beloved USA comes under such tyranny, I will have my weapons for protection of my family and home. The anti-gunners and the rest of the "sheep" who feel guns and gun owners are evil, will walk with bowed heads, tails between legs and walk slowly into the gas chambers and seal their fates. I will defend to the death, with my "assault rifle, Saturday night special, high-capacity magazine and my Second Amendment rights."
If you forget about history, you can forget about the future.
— Dennis Specht, minuteman
A real Ranger objects
I am writing to object to one of your writers giving himself the title of "Ranger," Rich Tosches.
I am a former U.S. Army Ranger and veteran of both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. My Ranger brothers and I earned the right to the title Ranger by enduring an extremely difficult selection course that historically has a graduation rate of 25 percent.
As far as I can tell, Mr. Tosches has never been in the U.S. Army, nor was he ever a USDA Forest Ranger or a National Park Service Ranger.
Mr. Tosches using the title Ranger is quite disrespectful to the U.S. Army, the USDA and the NPS. Mr. Tosches should immediately drop the title and find a more appropriate one to use.
— Lyndell Kaiser
Out of balance
Last Friday on PBS, Bill Moyers played an interview with Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs, where he stated "The American public has to understand you can't work for 25 years and expect to collect Social Security for 30 years. We have to reform Social Security."
Then Moyers pointed out Blankfein received a $54 million bonus, paid before the end of 2012 so he could avoid paying the higher taxes imposed for 2013!
Nobody I know worked for 25 years and expected to collect Social Security for 30 years. They worked more like 30 to 40 years. And most of my friends were lucky if they reached salaries totalling $50,000 a year before retirement.
Why do these rich people resist paying their fair share of taxes and now expect Social Security to be cut for the hard-working people lucky enough to make it to retirement?
I am so thankful we are not having an "Arab Spring" in this country, YET, but if these imbalances continue we certainly will!
— Elaine Brush