Downunder Stands Up

You might think Downunder is just a cool shop on the river that sells and rents stand-up paddle boards, kayaks and related gear.

Judging by its window, tonight I think it’s the most wonderful store in town.

(Photo/Katherine Bruan)

(Photo/Katherine Bruan)

40 responses to “Downunder Stands Up

  1. Robin Scarella

    Every store everywhere should copy and maybe the idiots who run our country will get the idea. So nice to see something good for a change.

  2. Okay…so this horrific disgusting evil act had nothing to do with terrorism? Maybe we should ban pressure cookers, nails, bolts, diesel fuel and fertilizer? Maybe our government needs to properly enforce the many repetitious gun laws currently on the books and common sense would dictate that people on the no fly list or terrorist watchlist should be prohibited from purchasing any firearm. The government seem unable to enforce the current guns laws so what makes anyone think that more laws are going to change things? If sick people or terrorists…which are sick people have the will they will find a way. France has one of the toughest gun laws on the planet but that did not stop the twisted terrorist. Belgium is under siege. We need to wake up and be outraged at this twisted ideology instead of using this crisis to advance an agenda when we have very strict gun laws that are not being enforced.

    • A. David Wunsch

      The “twisted ideology” is only one component of the problem . More to the point : the Sandy Hook killer, who was not connected to ISIS, fired off 150 rounds in 5 minutes. He had a gun and magazine that allowed him to send out a bullet every two seconds for 300 seconds. No citizen should be allowed to own such a weapon anymore than he be allowed to have a Sherman tank or a grenade launcher. The government should immediately place a ban on the purchase or possession of these assault rifles.
      This past week the NY Times ran a graph showing per- capita gun deaths throughout the world for industrialized nations. No other nation comes close to us. I felt ashamed for my country.
      ADW Staples 1956

    • ). It is becoming clear that this individual had significant mental health issues since kindergarten. 2) there is no evidence of his connection to terrorist organizations beyond his phone call during this terrible event. 3) And if is just flat out wrong to say that guns laws aren’t properly enforced. 4) This specific event probably could have been prevented if individuals like him who are on federal watch lists were prevented from being able to buy guns. But the republican party does the NRA’s bidding, so that’s a nonstarter. 5) Yes, gun laws do not prevent all crimes committed with guns, but all traffic laws do not prevent all traffic violations and deaths on the highways either, but we don’t conclude that the traffic laws are useless or should be abandoned. Regarding guns, we don’t allow the sale of machine guns, bazookas or surface to-air-misses, so it’s about time to reinstate the ban of the sale of assault style semi-automatic weapons, capisce?

    • Susan Ellis

      Which “very strict” gun laws are not being enforced?

  3. Dorian Barth

    Good for them for honoring the innocent victims and keeping the issue
    In sight.

  4. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    “WE CAN END GUN VIOLENCE”? Fat chance.
    The World looks at “America” and weeps. Weeps for its ignorance, fear, pretended superiority.
    Stop living in the rules of a “supreme law” written in the 18th century.

  5. Jamie Walsh

    Similarly to gun violence Nancy….you can’t be made to just go away.

  6. Susan Iseman

    Bravo for Down Under! Thank you for taking a stand. Speaking of down under, The Australians had a similar massacre in ’96 when one individual murdered 35 people with a gun. This prompted The National Firearms Agreement after which 640,000 weapons were turned in through a buy back program.

    • Jeff Arciola

      I guess down under is afraid to say stop terrorist. We don’t want to offend any Muslims. Just blame us gun owners and not these Islamic terrorist. Stop being politicaly correct and speak up people. I agree with common sense gun laws. These people want to kill Americans and we are afraid to hurt there feeling. Give me a break

      • Was the newtown killer a Muslim? How about Oklahoma City? Or Colarado. Muslim? What about columbine? Muslim? Americans all. Muslim, not so much.

      • Susan Iseman

        Jeff: Thousands of us concerned citizens have been speaking up often, speaking to our legislators, speaking at public hearings, speaking peacefully at gatherings in public and privately, raising funds, etc etc. Trust me we are not intimidated or politically correct. We are unfortunately at the mercy of our elected officials, many (not in CT!) who forget that they are supposed to serve the needs of their constituents, not the NRA and the gun lobby. Sadly, there have been plenty of mass murders that were committed by “caucasian men” not just “Isis sympathizers”. I’m not going to list the dreadful stats, but as you know, some of them are: Columbine, Charleston, Sandy Hook, Colorado, Oregon, Arizona, etc. We DO NOT blame responsible, law abiding gun owners, assuming you are one of them. We are terrified by the bloodbath caused by quick, multiple rounds and will keep speaking up, as many Americans have done in our proud history, and do whatever it takes, no matter how long it takes.

  7. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    Question: What do gun owners use assault weapons for?

    • What is an assault weapon? Things must be slow in Buggtussle.

      • A. David Wunsch

        “[when]the now-defunct Federal Assault Weapons Ban passed in 1994, the U.S. Justice Department said, “In general, assault weapons are semiautomatic firearms with a large magazine of ammunition that were designed and configured for rapid fire and combat use.”[

        The above is from wikipedia.
        ADW Staples 1956

      • Nancy Hunter Wilson

        That is a very glib and sad answer to a very serious question.
        Please answer my question. People everywhere want to understand what use an assault rifle aka war weapon outside of a war zone (you do understand where the war zones are, and why) serves?
        An abundance of your mass produced guns trickle through into other countries daily, putting these weapons into deadly hands.
        Thank you so very much.

        By the way, perhaps you should not rely on CNN for your information.

        • What’s a “war weapon” ? Are bayonets, swords and other weapons “war weapons”? I have no desire to own any of these types of “military style” rifles, but I don’t think it’s my place to to tell another American (who has passed a background check which I agree 100% with) that they can’t buy one. My duck hunting shotgun is a Mossberg 935 (it’s made in North Haven, CT) it’s a semi-auto but holds 3 shells. Is it a “war weapon”?

          • A. David Wunsch

            I do think it is my place to tell a citizen that he can’t own a gun like Adam Lanza’s– a weapon he used to fire 150 bullets in 300 seconds. The technology involved here was never envisioned by the Founding Fathers when they framed the Constitution. There is a history of reinterpreting the Bill of Rights as technology evolves. An example: we are guaranteed a right to free speech. But in 1912, after the sinking of the Titanic, Congress passed the Radio Act. It limited our rights to broadcast Morse Code and voice messages. You had to be licensed by the government and once licensed there were limits on what you could do. For example– there were limits on the power you could radiate, just as there should now be limits on the number of rounds per second and magazine capacity for weapons in the hands of Americans.
            ADW Staples 1956

            • The Founders did not frame the Constitution, The Framers did. Two different groups.

              I bet you think it is your place to tell a citizen what sort of weapon he can own. I bet you think it is your place to tell many people what they can or can’t do with respect to any number of issues. And I am sure there are many people who would like to tell you what to do. Fortunately, the Framers enumerated certain rights. If you want to take them away, you can give it a try. But expect push back, and a lengthy court battle.

              • The Founders — and Framers — lived in an age when the most dangerous weapon was a manually loaded musket. And when they not only believed it was fine to own other people — some of them did. Times change. So does the world we live in.

                Michael, do you take your shoes off at the airport? Do you put your toiletries in a Ziploc bag? Do you register your car, and your dog? Have you protested against any of those rules?

                • Jack Harder

                  I agree with you Dan but I also don’t think you have a constitutional right to fly, drive a car or even own a dog. It may seem silly but those are privileges. Both the US and CT constitutions grant rights to people to own firearms. The courts have ruled that those rights can be infringed for certain reasons such as the individual is a felon.

                • If you are going claim the Second Amendment is obsolete, which others are you willing to erase based on your perception of their relevance? The First, The Fourth, The Fifth, how many? The SCOTUS has ruled that the right to bear arms is fundamental; and accrues to individuals, Why would you want to truncate fundamental individual rights?

                  You would have the bad guys armed with whatever they choose, but prohibit law abiding citizens from having the same choice?

                  On what basis would you truncate the fundamental right to bear arms? Your preferences?


              • Certain rights, yes, but those rights are conditional. The first amendment doesn’t permit you to yell “fire” in a crowded heater unless there is an actual fire. And the second amendment is subject to being “well regulated”” so it was perfectly constitional for machine guns to be outlawed in 1934.

  8. That’s a red herring, Michael — but there are precedents for adapting as certain technologies change (NOT, as you put it, as certain amendments become “obsolete”). I’ll reference A. David Wunsch’s comment, from above. He said:

    “The technology involved here was never envisioned by the Founding Fathers when they framed the Constitution. There is a history of reinterpreting the Bill of Rights as technology evolves. An example: we are guaranteed a right to free speech. But in 1912, after the sinking of the Titanic, Congress passed the Radio Act. It limited our rights to broadcast Morse Code and voice messages. You had to be licensed by the government and once licensed there were limits on what you could do. For example– there were limits on the power you could radiate, just as there should now be limits on the number of rounds per second and magazine capacity for weapons in the hands of Americans.”

    One further thought: Would you put any limit on what types of arms an individual could bear? Is (as has been mentioned before) a private grenade launcher? What about a dirty nuclear bomb? Those too are “arms,” right?

    • Talk about a red herring. Nuclear bombs! Very funny. You did not answer my question. On what basis would you restrict individual rights?

      • On the basis of public safety. And — with polls showing that vast majority of Americans (including Republicans, though not politicians who are wholly owned subsidiaries of the NRA) — agree with some form of sensible gun legislation, that time is coming soon. Neither Obama nor Downunder nor I are coming for your pistols or handguns, Michael. We’re coming for the semi-automatic killing machines of crazy people, most of whom are (sorry) white men.

        • Not a well articulated standard. It can be used to truncate every individual right, including yours.

          You are advocating a might makes right approach to public policy. If enough people favored banning gay marriage would you conclude that gay marriage should be banned?

          • Nancy Hunter Wilson

            Standards and concepts of society change over time.

          • Not a well articulated standard. There is no comparison between gay marriage and public safety.

            But I will address your point anywhere. At one point, yes, the majority of people did oppose same-sex marriage. Eventually, through a variety of means — public debate, images in the media, court decisions — laws banning gay marriage were overturned. If the Supreme Court had ruled differently in 2014, then the pro-same sex marriage forces would have continued to fight for it, in other ways.

            Which is exactly what is happening now. The tide of public opinion is turning — though the politicians owned by the NRA have not yet realized it.

            To a point I made earlier, which you did not respond to except to call it a red herring: Where would you draw the line on arms? Why NOT allow — by your reasoning — an individual to own a grenade launcher OR a dirty bomb? Please respond where you draw the line — and how.

            To reiterate my point: My safety — and every other American’s, including yours — should not be compromised by your interpretation of something written over 200 years ago. (I won’t even make the “well-regulated militia” argument.) Your position is both selfish and — as has been demonstrated time and again, from Orlando to San Bernardino to Newtown — life-threatening.

            • Yes there is. Your standard was popular opinion. When popular opinion changes your rights will change. That is not what the Founders had in mind. They saw inalienable rights.

              Your standard now is your safety as you perceive it. You would eliminate individual rights based upon your perceptions. No rights are safe.

              You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before. Rahm Emanuel

              • I’m done, Michael. This is like playing whack-a-mole. I’m not going to engage anymore. Though of course you are free to continue to post whatever you wish on my blog.

                But I’m still waiting for your response on where you draw the line on what arms are unacceptable to you.

      • Why don’t you answer Dan’s question?

    • I’m pretty sure the SCOTUS Heller decision determined that you need to be able to “bear” the arm. If you can’t carry it then the 2nd amendment doesn’t apply. You may be able to own a grenade launcher (why anyone would I no idea) but they are all basically a big single shot gun. It’s a tube with a single shot. It’s 100% illegal for a civilian to own a grenade (which for a launcher would be a 40mm). I don’t know if there has ever been a court contest/ decision but I’m almost 100% sure that civilians can’t own nuclear material unless its for some sort of medical use.

      Whether people agree with my position or not (many I’m sure don’t!) I think it’s wonderful that Dan has created a forum for people to discuss/ debate issues.

  9. Where do we draw a line? There are already over 5 Million AR style weapons in the circulation. If you ban them….are the “bad” guys turning them in? No, absolutely not. If they can’t use these high capacity weapons, they Can manufacture explosive devices from items easily obtainable at your local hardware store in less than an hour. Statistically, more people are killed each year with blunt objects than they are with guns. Albeit not as shocking as Columbine, Newtown, Colorado, Boston,San Bernardino, or Orlando… but add it up and it is horrific. let’s face facts. Enforce the rules on the books. I agree there are some loop holes which need to be closed because they are just commonsensical. Ultimately our government dropped the ball with this wacko and people surrounding some of the other nut jobs like Adam Lanza looked the other way including his father who should be locked up for his cluelessness. People need to be held accountable for their actions and speak out. See something…say something whether or not it is a terrorist or some deranged individual who is implying or making threatening statements.

  10. Jamie Walsh

    statistics…statistic…damn statistics. You can believe your statistic and I will believe mine.

  11. Jerry MacDaid

    To some extent this is simple. If “most people” don’t want people to “bear arms”, there is a Constitutional mechanism other than resorting to the courts hoping they will re-interpret the Second Amendment. That is, repeal the Second Amendment or modify the parts you don’t like.

    There, problem solved.