Letters to the Editor: Far-right militia members at the polls. What country is this?

Michigan Home Guard
Members of the Michigan Home Guard protest Sept. 17 outside the Michigan Statehouse in Lansing.
(Jeff Kowalsky / AFP / Getty Images)

To the editor: There is no way armed private militia groups should be allowed to patrol polling locations as a way to frighten people away from voting. How far are we going to let President Trump’s dictator ambitions take us?

This is like trying to vote in Middle Eastern or South American dictatorships.

Why is what once was a conservative but responsible, more or less ethical (as much as any political party is ethical) Republican Party going along with this sad and deadly circus?

Christin Rubesh, Port Hueneme



To the editor: So, it finally comes down to this — because we have this crazy 2nd Amendment, which worked in the 18th century but doesn’t work at all in 2020, people have a plethora of guns and believe they have a right to use them for whatever purpose they deem necessary.

Why can’t the local police departments and federal law enforcement agencies come together in those cities where voter intimidation might be a problem and create a presence? Is this so hard?

People have a right to vote for whomever they want in peace and without fear.

Barbara Busch, Santa Barbara


To the editor: I read with fear about armed militiamen “guarding” polling places. How can this be happening in 2020 in the United States?

We are fairly safe in California, given that this is not a swing state. But if I lived in, say, Pennsylvania or Michigan, I would be terrified to vote at a polling place.

When we attend athletic events, we are screened for guns and other weapons. Often, there is a line at a kiosk to check a purse or another kind of bag. If one brings personal belongings in a see-through plastic bag, entrance is usually granted. We are screened when we get on an airplane to fly.


Why can’t there be similar security at polling places? Put a border around the precinct and screen all who enter. Turn them away if they refuse to be screened, and arrest them if they cause a disturbance.

We must not let these vigilantes take over our democracy using intimidation and violence.

Steve Makoff, Carlsbad


To the editor: While looking at the photo of the Michigan Home Guard members, I couldn’t help but thinking this:

“Gee, these fellas aren’t so different from me. My buddies and I used to love to dress up and play Army when we were 8 years old.”

Bill Bennett, Huntington Beach