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Letter: Rights earned by behavior

Last Sunday afternoon while my grandchildren were swimming in our pool a bullet whizzed through our yard - apparently shot by neighbors who were target shooting.

When I complained, they insisted that it couldn't have been them -- they were shooting safely into a bank, not in our direction. When they showed me their shooting range it turned out they were shooting into a creek with a 45-caliber pistol, apparently not aware that bullets can ricochet off of water or wet stones in the creek. And it wasn't just my family threatened by this recklessness. They had several young children with them and were drinking beer while shooting.

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This is not the first such incident on my property either. My daughter was riding her bike in our driveway several years ago when bullets from a neighbor target shooting whizzed by her. If it's happened to our family twice in the past 10 years, how often does this happen? I remember some years back when a man had his pregnant wife shot to death next to him in their car -- obviously a reckless act. I shudder to think that that could've happened to one of my family on my own property.

There is a lot of talk about gun rights today. I always thought that rights were earned by responsible behavior. I don't believe that people who drink, shoot powerful weapons with young children around and don't even know that bullets can ricochet off water and rocks and travel hundreds of yards deserve the right to bear arms.

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Chris Batten

Taneytown

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