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Letters to the Editor: Newsom’s response to Texas is exactly what our democracy doesn’t need now

A man at a podium speaks and holds his hands up
Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a news conference in Los Angeles on Nov. 10.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: I am unequivocally pro-gun control. Working with public school students in South Los Angeles, I have known several students who were shot in their neighborhoods and one student who was killed.

However, I deplore Gov. Gavin Newsom’s pitch to apply to gun control the same nasty approach of citizen vigilantism borrowed from Texas’ anti-abortion law. It reeks of the tactics authoritarian governments use everywhere to turn citizens into spies.

I understand his rationale, but our democracy is in serious peril at the moment. Creating laws that are at their core undemocratic and extra-judicial, laws that work against the trust we need in each other, will bring our democracy to its end.

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Ann Colburn, Los Angeles

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To the editor: Should Newsom be successful with enacting a gun-control version of Texas’s anti-abortion law, it should be named the “Attorneys Full Employment and Financial Security Act.”

The number of lawsuits will increase, the courts will get even more tied up and there will be more appeals that will end up costing the taxpayers more money.

For years we have tried to pass sensible gun laws. The results have been abysmal. The right to bear arms, as enumerated in the U.S. Constitution, has been affirmed one way or another to allow the normalization of mass killings.

I suggest a different approach that might get around the constitutional problem: banning bullets.

Arthur Kraus, Venice

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To the editor: Newsom just reminded me why I was so glad to vote for him twice.

The Supreme Court’s conservative majority has chosen impotence over jurisprudence, so blue states have permission to act. Assault weapons are a great start, though I’d also include unpermitted handguns.

But how about adding abortion protections by allowing citizens to sue anyone who inhibits or even tries to deter a woman from obtaining a procedure in the first 20 weeks or threatens a healthcare worker? Also, let’s secure our elections by allowing citizens to sue anyone misinforming or intimidating voters or antagonizing poll workers.

Think of all the deep-pocketed, alt-right organizations this would expose to litigation. The list of social priorities is lengthy and we could address most of them in short order.

It’s a great time to be a California legislator. Thanks for enabling all of it, Texas.

Paul Kradin, Los Angeles

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To the editor: While Newsom is at it, he should recommend that California enact legislation allowing private citizens to sue media outlets that propagated the Big Lie that President Biden did not really win the 2020 election, since it is so harmful to our democratic republic.

The 1st Amendment be damned.

Lou Matz, Stockton

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To the editor: Newsom is acting as if two wrongs make a right.

Due to the U.S. Supreme Court’s unfortunate failure to overturn Texas’ novel law outlawing abortion after six weeks, Newsom thinks California can craft a law to allow individuals to sue assault rifle manufacturers or distributors. This is no longer a democracy; it’s an idiocracy.

Jim Rueff, Fountain Valley


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