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Pasco 'stand your ground' trial highlights problems with gun laws

Horn trial brings problem to light

Since the Max Wesley Horn trial has garnered so much attention, people have forgotten that the law about standing your ground is more about the shootings that were dismissed than the 20 percent that will get to trial.

At least for these shootings, the jury may make the call instead of the National Rifle Association. The family of those with dismissed shootings are angry and frustrated since there was no jury. We have five shootings in Pasco alone that were dismissed because of this law. I presented this problem to our Pasco legislative delegation, who all voted for this law, but they were unresponsive and Sen. Victor Crist and Rep. Will Weatherford have not met with my organization and survivors as they promised.

To understand why these shootings are being dismissed, Google "University of Miami Law 2008 Stand Your Ground Law" for a study. This includes a presumption that if any person enters your space without your permission, even by accident, that person is presumed to be doing something illegal or has deadly intent, and you can use deadly force against that unarmed person.

If there are no witnesses, simply tell the police this unarmed person was a threat to your person, your family or your home and you will receive the special treatment demand by the NRA and all charges will be dropped.

By law, the judge must read the Stand Your Ground statutes for the jury's consideration. If you are in a place you have a right to be and if you become fearful for great bodily harm or death, you do not have to retreat and you can meet force with force, including deadly force. In the Horn case, the jury had to acquit.

Just one more sad story of guns and alcohol. Far too many in this state use both.

Arthur C. Hayhoe, executive director, Florida Coalition to Stop Gun Violence Inc.

In defense of nursing home

Concerning the state inspection of the Bayonet Point Health and Rehabilitation Center, I was astounded that the facility in the article was the same place that took care of my beloved 94-year-old mother for almost one year.

She received excellent nursing care from the nurses. She was kept clean and tidy, showered, hair combed, nails clipped, and properly dressed daily by her loving nursing assistants. In regards to the food, comparing it to other institutional food, like at local hospitals, it excelled in taste, and presentation.

There are two sides to this story. If you interviewed the residents and families, do they feel they are receiving substandard care?

Elaine E. Maywalt, Spring Hill

Fest proved arts are alive in Pasco

On behalf of the Suncoast Arts Fest presented by Hyundai and Mazda of Wesley Chapel at the Shops of Wiregrass on Jan. 23-24, we would like to convey our deepest gratitude to all those who made the event an outstanding success.

To our sponsors, our volunteers, our weekend partners — Pasco Arts Council, West Pasco Art Guild, Progress Energy Gallery, Leepa-Rattner Museum of Fine Arts, Main Street Library, New Port Richey Recreation and Aquatic Center, Pioneer Florida Museum, and Alric Pottberg Gallery at PHCC — and especially to our artists, craftsmen, and entertainers, we give our heartfelt thanks for your contribution in support of our mission, which is to promote the arts and culture for the children in Pasco County.

This was a weekend that proved Pasco is a great place to live and that the arts and culture are alive, thriving, and available in our county. Our communities can and will support the various venues available within the county. Our youth will have opportunities available to them despite the challenges of the current economy.

Thanks, too, to the thousands of patrons who came out to enjoy the beautiful weather and experience the Suncoast Arts Fest. Please visit www.suncoastartsfest.com for detailed information on the event.

Pam Marron, Marj Golub, Stephanie Bracciale

Suncoast Arts Fest

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. share your views

The Pasco Times welcomes letters from readers for publication.

Because of space limitations, letters should be of reasonable length (250-300 words maximum as a rule). Letters may be edited for clarity, taste and length.

All letters must be signed and must contain the writer's address and telephone number. Addresses and telephone numbers will not be printed.

Send your letter to Pasco Times, 11321 U.S. 19, Port Richey, FL 34668, or by fax to (727) 869-6233 or go to www.tampabay.com/letters/.

Fill out the form to supply us with your personal information, the subject line, and type your letter in the space provided. You can also cut and paste a letter that you have prepared elsewhere in your computer. When you are done, hit the button that says "Submit My Letter."

Pasco 'stand your ground' trial highlights problems with gun laws 02/02/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 2, 2010 6:13pm]

    

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