RTM May Tackle Guns

Westport’s RTM — the Representative Town Meeting — usually tackles local topics. Our elected officials debate and vote on budgets, contracts and sewers.

RTMSometimes they decide huge Westport questions. The RTM okayed the town’s purchases of Longshore, Cockenoe Island and Winslow Park.

Every once in a while, the RTM ventures onto national turf.

In 1972 — following a petition signed by 1000 residents, and a 3-hour debate — the RTM endorsed a resolution calling on President Nixon and Congress to “take immediate action to withdraw from the war in Vietnam.” The vote was 17 to 15.

In 1982 the RTM passed a Sense of the Meeting Resolution urging the US and Soviet Union to agree to a nuclear arms freeze. That vote was 24 to 2, with 7 abstentions.

On Tuesday, January 8 (7:30 p.m., Town Hall), the RTM will discuss this item:

To take such action as the meeting may determine, upon the request of at least 20 electors of the Town of Westport, for the RTM to place an item on an upcoming agenda … involving a request to support gun control legislation in the United States and urge the President and federal legislators, as well as Connecticut state legislators, to enact a ban on automatic and semi-automatic assault weapons and high-capacity magazine clips.  Furthermore, to support closing the “gun-show loophole” that allows people to buy guns at trade shows and from private dealers without background checks.

That discussion will not be about guns themselves; its focus is whether the RTM should discuss the topic at an upcoming meeting.

If recent comments on “06880″ are any indication, both sides will come out firing.

76 responses to “RTM May Tackle Guns

  1. The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

    More knee jerk feel good laws. Just go ahead and declare Westport a “Gun Free Zone”, while you’re at it, disarm the police too since they won’t theirs either.
    Liberal, the new euphemism for idiot.
    Hey, but you mean well and in the liberal mind, that’s all that matters, regardless of actual results or unintended consequences.
    Hey here’s an idea, why don’t you do something that actually works with proven results?!
    Oh I don’t know, maybe put armed guards in the schools or have the police make unscheduled walks through the schools. You know, like the schools do in and around D.C. where the liberal elites send their children. Just ask Meet the Press David Gregory, his children’s school has 11 armed guards. Of course you would know that the way he and his ilk have been demonizing guns as the suck up to the liberal talking points.
    Oh and if you ever did out law guns in Westport, that would be it for me…see ya!

    • I’m pretty sure the sense of any resolution is not going to be to disarm the police or outlaw guns in Westport, but thanks for your reasonable, measured, sober response.

      • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

        It makes a lot more sense than the oppositions! What do they got?
        “Take the guns away from the law abiding citizens”, but do nothing about the criminals since they can’t. ‘Cause if you could, you would of.

  2. A gun in every pot!

    Nothing like aggressively sarcastic people with guns with my morning coffee. The best part of waking up is a pissed off wingnut in your cup.

    • What about actually addressing the substance of that post? What do you think about what the anonymous commenter has said? How do you agree or disagree? Why? Let’s try to be productive, not snarky.

      • A gun in every pot!

        Whenever someone suggests the answer to excessive gun violence in America is more guns, I figure the time for productive dialogue has ended. Fortunately, on the internet, I don’t have to take gun fetishists seriously. It’s only in person that the bullets can rip through flesh.

        • I agree with you, but we always must look at all of the viewpoints. It makes us all better people — even if the idea is an absurd one.

          I do not support armed guards at every school but I will say that the pilot programs in Virginia and D.C. (how ironic) have been incredibly successful, for what it’s worth.

          But yes, there is no reason to own high capacity magazines or automatic assault weapons. I’d also like to see the RTM address the other issues/factors, such as gun storage and treatment of mental health. Not holding my breath…

        • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

          Hey crack pot, What about the fact that your liberal friends including your messiah Obama sends his kids to an armed guarded school, not including their armed secret service protection?
          So for them it does seem more than okay for more guns, but you want to deny my children the same protection?! Yet, I’m the crazy one by your liberal logic. You make my case!

          • There are different types of shooters. The boy in Newtown seemed to have a major mental illness. Then there are people full of hate, who would enjoy making a name for themselves by killing the child of someone famous, like the president. Those children are also likely to be kidnapped. Because so many people own guns in our country, certain schools are likely targets for gun related crimes. It doesn’t make sense to make every school a fortress. And it’s ironic that most people who propose that idea are also not willing to pay the taxes to pay the huge amount that would cost. And where do we stop? Churches? Movie theaters? Malls? Do we send armed guards to every fire? More guns will not result in less death.

            • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

              So your answer is to take away from the law abiding citizens and that will protect us more.
              Okaaay, that makes sense – Maybe in your world with unicorns where we all hold hands and sing kumbaya, but sorry to say not in reality.

      • I’ll 2nd that emotion.

      • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

        Thanks Frank, but him and the his liberal friends never do since their good intentions, feel good laws and politically correct ways never actually work.
        So instead of attempting to address what I say, they call me names, mock me and use all their Saul Alinsky ways to discredit me and anyone they disagree with.
        Of course they never question why these things keep happening or consider trying another method or at least wonder why high priced private schools, where liberal elites send their children, offer armed protection.
        No, they feel too superior and righteous to address facts; those are for ‘right wingers’ who don’t believe in science.

        • You are definitely not helping, now. You are making it worse. Pipe down. I tried my best.

          • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

            Frank I hear what you’re saying, but respectfully disagree.
            Playing ‘nice’ gets you no where these days and sometimes you have to take a page from the liberals play book to make your point.
            Sad, but true – nice guys finish last.
            Liberal policies have screwed things up too much already. Enough is enough, time to step up and speak up.

  3. When an 8 year old child is afraid to go to school because another ‘bad man’ could come to them- then you know it’s time to take action. The RTM should get involved, this is not a political issue anymore. This is a national health epidemic.

    • As is the treatment of mental health which, not surprisingly, the RTM is completely ignoring.

    • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

      Or the unsustainable debt! What about that?!

    • Would the eight year old feel safer if they saw a policeman at school every morning who was there to protect them? I mean that sincerely and am not trying to be provocative.

  4. A petition was circulating to put armed guards or police in each Westport school, but that was before the NRA adopted the same recommendation. Now we want more gun control. It would be more productive if the people in this town were not so politically fickle.

    • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

      How so? ‘Cause you say so?! Oh yeah, I’m sure that seals it! Thanks magic Jeanie! Can you grant me two more wishes?

  5. Don’t forget the Westport RTM was one of the first in the nation to ban the plastic grocery bags — an initiative that has taken hold rapidly including in Los Angeles. A healthy discussion of gun control is completely appropriate. Condescending comments by anonymous posters who impugn the intelligence and intergrity of others are not appropriate, but apparently are well-tolerated on Dan’s blog. Happy New Year!

    • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

      Then Dan would have to ban you! As much as I find you offensive, I still support your rights to be an idiot publicly.

    • Second- San Francisco was first. ‘Nuff said.

  6. In order to protect our kids, we must arm everyone in authority they come in contact with: Teachers…principals…head custodians…coaches…hall monitors…class officers…lunch room ladies…referees/umpires… crossing guards… school bus drivers… baby sitters…movie ticket takers… scout leaders…life guards at the beach… ministers/rabbis/imams… Apple store employees… librarians… driving instructors… mall Santas… Starbucks baristas… drug dealers (just kidding!)…pediatricians/dentists… PTA presidents … hair dressers… fast food managers…

    • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

      Nice try to be outrageous, but the same will work IF the criminal THINKS everyone MAY have a gun. Understand how that works?

    • God bless you John. Your post was just what I needed to be reminded that there are still sane people on this blog!!!!

    • Anyone running for public office ? The drug dealers are already armed without a background check.

    • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

      Hartwell is a liberal shill who’s worked for Malloy and tows the liberal line of talking points.
      Like the rest of them, he doesn’t really care how to protect the children, he only cares about disarming the public.

      • Yes, “Liberal Mind”, I’m a liberal, though I never worked for Malloy (not sure where LinkedIn got that). Anyone who wants to wants to know what I think can watch my show “Stream of Conscience” on YouTube (www.youtube.com/user/dfatvnet).

        So, who are you? Why do you hide behind a false identity and say nasty things about people you’ve never met?

        • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

          I got it from you, you bloviating braggart! It was on your Facebook page that you had linked earlier right here to your own comments!

          • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

            Which I now see you removed!
            Typical phony lib!

            • No I haven’t, though I will after this is over as it shouldn’t be there. Like I said, I never worked for Malloy in any capacity.

              When are you going to give us your name? Why are you hiding? What are you afraid of? You seem to like calling people names. Were you a bully in school, too, or is this a recent affliction?

              • The Liberal mind...

                So how did it get there if its ‘not supposedto be there’?
                And thanks for your passive aggressive armchair analysis.
                Happy New Year John.

                • Possibly when I “friended” someone who did work for for Dan.

                  I notice that you continue to ignore my question. Why won’t you reveal yourself? What are you hiding?

                  • John, he’s a coward besides being obnoxious and rude. Just hope he’s not gun-happy.

                    • The Liberal mind...

                      Youliberalsreallyareabunchofgoofball.enjoyyourcirclejerk!
                      I’mgoingoutwithmyfamilytocelebrat.happyNewYears!!

  7. How bout they bring some attention to the mental health issue instead?

  8. This resolution has been proposed by certain Westport voters. As such, it must be considered and, most likely, voted upon by the RTM. Most likely many on the RTM have views on the issue now, but also will be very interested in the inputs of our residents in the form of attendance at the RTM Meeting, speaking at the RTM Meeting, e mails to the RTM and letters or e mails to our newspapers, “06880″ and other on line discussion vehicles. If a vote by the RTM is taken, I hope that there will be very few abstentions. I also hope that if members of the RTM believe that the RTM should simply not engage in actions on non local issues those members make that clear. I believe that engagement is desirable. I also believe that a case can be made that this is a local issue. I also hope that our elected leaders in addition to RTM members “weigh in”. No one should be reluctant to express well thought out views out of a fear of losing votes. Don Bergmann RTM Rep. Dist. One

  9. So….the RTM is going to discuss and vote on whether they should discuss and vote on something…which will have no force of law, or any relevance whatsoever to anyone in a position of power to do anything about it. I hear next they will take up the thorny issue of the designated hitter in MLB.

  10. Westport Convert

    HELLO ALL,

    I have recently spoken with a teacher at Darien High and she discussed the fact that so many kids feel safer and at ease with a trained officer stationed in their school.

    Here is a recent article highlighting the decision (enacted this past September). It’s food for thought. That’s all I’m saying.

    http://darien.dailyvoice.com/schools/darien-high-police-officer-settles-new-role

    • Yes, but his role is as a resource for students and teachers. If Adam Lanza had walked in there as fully armed as he was at Newtown I’m afraid this officer would have been the first to die.

      • Bullshit.

        • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

          Liberals like to live in their fantasy world where facts and common sense DO NOT exist. Unfortunately, they make the world less safe for ALL OF US!

        • Setting a great example….. I expect that young Darien police officer is an expert marksman ready to out shoot someone with a bushmaster with a 30 clip. I’m the one living in a fantasy world……

          • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

            Yes you are Tracy. Again you are speculating.
            I would have preferred the Sandy Hook principle to have been armed when she knowingly confronted a madman with a gun, then be unarmed.
            A trained officer with a hand gun could have easily taken down a crazed madman; It has happened before.
            I’ll take those odds then the alternative you offer!
            What did you offer again? Oh NOTHING! Thanks liberal for keeping children safe.

  11. The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

    Tracy, That may or may not be true, but most likely not. Had an armed officer or trained guard been on the premises when gunfire blasted through the security door I am most certain a trained experienced guard would know how to approach to take down the threat.
    If not then, well certainly now with what has occurred.
    So your speculation seems incorrect and if were true, then, WHY DO MANY PRIVATE SCHOOLS HAVE ARMED PERSONEL TO PROTECT THE CHILDREN??
    Please DON’T ignore facts!!

  12. Nice talk, Parent Too! Such a well-reasoned, articulate, highly informed point of view. It’s made even more compelling by your commitment to transparency and willingness to stand behind your principles, we are truly blessed to have you as part of our community.

    • Can you type and do your superiority dance at the same time? Why not call out all the anonymous posters, like “Tracy” for example, instead of just those you disagree with?

      • I’m not anonymous. I’m Tracy Flood. I don’t claim to understand the love of guns shared by many in our country – but looking to prevent those extremely dangerous semi-automatic weapons from getting into the hands of civilians hardly qualifies me as a zealot. And although my heart still aches for the 20 babies executed 2 weeks ago, I try to treat people civilly – even those who clearly don’t think before they speak.

        • The liberal mind - No logic, just squishy feelings and herd mentality

          Tracy, Why don’t you make yourself useful and figure out how to get the guns out of the hands of the criminals! Taking them from law abiding citizens is easy!
          Oh, I know why, because you can’t!
          So thanks for making more unarmed victims who can’t help anyone.
          Thanks a lot!
          So WHY DON’t YOU think before you speak?!
          Seems you and your compassionate friends have all the answers, except how to actually preventing it. Other than your fantasy world of ‘gun control’. How’s that working out for you in Washington D.C. and Chicago?
          Please speak up, I can’t hear you.

          • Bitter, party of one?

            • The Liberal mind...

              And you’re not snarky or rude (sarc), but you are a big ass hypocrite, which most libs are.
              Of course since you are morally superior you exempt yourself from your own criticism of others.
              But I’m the bad guy, take a look at the bad, you’re never gonna see another bad guy like me…

      • I focused on you because you posted the most offensive language while hiding your identity. When you’re brave enough to come out in the open, we can talk about who feels most superior.

        • Hi John,

          As someone who is not posting anonymously, I never understand this need and desire (and borderline crusade) for refusing to converse with the nameless.

          I asked this in another post. What is the true reasoning behind your demands? I do not understand. Will putting a name to the feelings and thoughts expressed here somehow magically change your reaction? Will you “respect” them?

          Not at all. With all due respect, John, it feels like a bit of a cop out to me. And I don’t even agree with “A Parent Too.” But it’s worth considering.

          • Hi Frank,
            Sorry if I missed your earlier request. I’m all for having a vigorous debate, but I do like to know who I’m talking to, and yes, it does affect how much respect I give them.

            I’m not sure why you think it’s a cop out, I thought I made my feelings crystal clear in at least two posts today. Both were heavily sarcastic and therefore not very polite, but neither threw around wild statements about what someone else has said or intends to say, which seems to be the mainstay of Liberal Mind’s “argument” (yes, I put that in quotes because I don’t respect either the person or their line of reasoning).

            So let me make a positive statement: I believe the gun industry, aided by the NRA, has created a market for high caliber, military-style semi-automatic weapons which has made this country immeasurably less safe and secure, and that we would all be better off if these guns were completely and permanently removed from civilians and only allowed for the military and very limited law enforcement use.

            I also believe that as a society we’ve made treating mental illness almost impossible if the patient doesn’t agree to treatment, and that by closing most state-run mental health facilities we’ve created a situation where many of the homeless and a significant proportion of the incarcerated (perhaps as high as 25% by one estimate I heard this week) would have been “certifiable” in an earlier age and taken off the streets and given help for their safety and ours.

            Of course the former system was expensive and was sometimes abused, but it was motivated by a desire to both help the afflicted and protect the community, and we should give serious consideration to creating a modern equivalent where “patient rights’ are respected but not necessarily the only factor.

            Finally, change will only come if we as a society demand it, and I fully support the call for the RTM to go on record on this issue. New England town meetings have often played a crucial role in the past in creating conditions for larger societal change, and every bit of pressure possible should be applied to our representatives in Hartford and Washington to get rid of these weapons forever.

  13. RTM,
    Focus on the Town of Westport. We voted for you because we thought you understood the Town, not the National Rifle Association, not the 2nd Amendment. Please pass on bringing this to a vote.

  14. Tracy, it appears that the crazy gunman shot his way through a front locked door. If you had a police officer there he might have been on the radio in a split second to request backup…somehow when a cop calls dispatch…shots fired…the cavalry responds a little quicker and backup can assess how to approach… and maybe …just maybe…he might have been able to position himself in an offensive position to act immediately . The real issue is violence in our society…and maybe a little parenting… Violent video games desensitize kids to violence and those with mental illnesses could not have helped the situation. The gunmans mother has some responsibility, knowing full well that her son had issues, yet he was able to freely access her guns. What wrong with that senerio. This is more of an issue about the breakdown of moral values and right and wrong more than another layer of useless gun control issues that bad people do not abide by anyway. Gun owners however, have the responsibility to properly secure their firearms in a responsible manner.

    • I agree with you Jamie, but the article describes this young officer hanging out in the cafeteria and in classes to build bonds with the students. If he’s posted I. The front, they’ll shoot their way in the back, if they are determined.

      • Lots of hypotheticals in that.

        If you want to take YOUR philosophy, then what about bombing a school? After all, if they are determined, guards and gun control won’t stop them. Because they are “determined.”

        See how that works?

    • Jamie makes great points. Rational thinking with a balanced approach to the issue.

      Also, why should the RTM care about this? They have no pull or impact on any national conversation. Let Hartford tackle this one. Honestly, Westport is a speck of dust on the scope of national issues. And I’m a Westport resident saying that..

      • You nailed it, Frank :-)

      • The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

        Frank, If you know how the liberal mind ‘works’ then you will understand why.
        For a liberal, actual results DO NOT matter, facts DO NOT matter, history DOES not matter, common sense DOES NOT matter, it’s the IDEA or their intentions that matter, regardless of all else.
        For them, which is what it is all about (them), is they FEEL GOOD that they think they have done something positive.
        It’s really all about them and the abstract idea they have done ‘something’. That’s it, that’s all.
        Real world results DO NOT matter, just that they feel good that they have done something.
        Welcome to the liberal mind.

        • Thanks, friend. I consider myself a libertarian, so I understand how both republican and liberal minds work. Because I live it. And that’s the way I like it.

          • Gun Control Crowd Not Serious (or real)

            Agreed. I would describe myself as an idependent conservative leaning libertarian who was more socially liberal years ago.
            As I have lived and traveled the world, I know how dangerous liberal/social policies are.

  15. The liberal mind - No logic, Just squishy feelings and herd mentality

    I agree with you Mr. Walsh.
    Here’s another fact no one is talking about – According to USAToday timeline of events, it took the police 20 minutes to respond.
    As a proactive measure I advocate for having school security wired in to the police station so no one must dial 911 first. The second the security system is breached, officers are dispatched immediately.
    Banks do it, homes do it, jewelry stores do it, schools can do it. No it isn’t the only answer, but it will help and reduce the amount of time a shooter as to kill before being stopped.

  16. I truly don’t understand all of the anger and personal attacks on here. I know we are all still reeling from the death of these tiny ones, but the rudeness is hideous.

  17. I agree Tracy…this should be a civil debate…especially in light of the heinous act committed by a young man turned into a monster.

    • The Liberal mind...

      The definition of a ‘civil debate’ is when you agree with the liberal talking points.
      No thank you, it’s just an echo chamber.
      You may not like my delivery, but NONE of you brilliant, tolerant, diversity accepting libs (which we all know is b.s) countered or addressed one thing I said.
      And if you think I didn’t have any valid points, then go back and read them again.
      If you want to have a civil productive debate, then address the issues instead of the same old liberal talking points.
      Go back to the beginning of this thread and see how my valid points were never addressed and where it went off the rails.
      Good night and Happy New Year to all!

  18. I’ve had it with the comments on here. There is way too much anonymous bullying going on here. It has nothing to do with “liberal”/”conservative”; it has to do with the tone of the comments, and how it’s being said. Some people have taken advantage of the commenting policy. Enough is enough. For the first time ever, I’m shutting off the comments. Happy New Year.