Real cause of violenceDepartment of Justice stats reflect that over the last several years, the rate of gun deaths has declined 39 percent and for some groups, 64 percent (Letters, June 7).According to FBI stats, you are 8.5 times more likely to be bludgeoned, stabbed or choked to death than shot. If one follows Courtney Smith’s logic, why do countries and cities with the strictest gun laws have the most violence? Russia, where guns are very restricted has 100 times more gun violence than the U.S. Look to our immediate south, Mexico has far more deaths in border cities than the U.S. Chicago, with strict gun laws, had 64 murders in one weekend. Gun violence is due to our lack of morals and respect for each other. It is also due to a judicial system which doesn’t enforce current laws. With murderer Elliot Rodger, the system failed to assist the family begging for help. Why punish the 99.5 percent of law-abiding citizens over the conduct of a few? — Richard Lilly, Haltom CityThe buck stops hereWhen is Congress going to gut up and tell the American people “the buck stops here”? Instead, lawmakers get all hot and blustery and call for the resignation of some political appointee who is a figurehead of some governmental agency. Then they break their arms patting themselves on the back for a job well done.If they can find the money to start wars, then they darn sure can find the money to take care of those who had to do the fighting. You can rest assured that those who supplied the weapons of war never got a scratch and were paid in full.Flag-waving and political posturing ain’t gonna cut it. — W.B. Slaughter, Fort Worth Taxes and morals On red-light cameras as a moral issue: Enforcement against red-light runners is fair game (Letters, May 30). The $75 fine is cheap for that violation, since it carries more risk of serious collisions.To contest a violation is a time-consuming hearing, with prohibitively expensive legal representation and rules that allow for no errors by the “reviewers.” This camera program is more about money than safety. The red-light equipment manufacturers, suppliers and government agencies are enormously profitable. Public response is minimal. This is not a moral issue. It is a tax. — Paul Buckley, Mansfield Disappointed in GOPI’ve voted mostly Republican my entire life.I was a Main Street Republican. I wanted government to keep us safe, maintain infrastructure, and enforce reasonable regulations to prevent fraud and safety hazards.I no longer recognize the Texas Republican party as my own.It mindlessly rejects even needed government expenditures; it favors polluters over public safety; the only government activities for which it has an unlimited appetite are imposing conservative Christian morality on society and conducting crony capitalism to reward the politically connected at the expense of the rest of us.The latest primary results confirm this trend. I cannot stomach the thought of voting for most of the Republican nominees.In the past, I voted Libertarian in those situations. This year, I anticipate voting mostly Democratic.At least the Democrats want to use government to help people rather than oppress, poison, and rob us.I urge anyone who cares about good government and opposes religious fanaticism and legal graft to join me. — George Michael Sherry, Fort WorthMisplaced prideIf you don’t want to show an ID to vote, that’s your right. You have the right to be uncooperative when the officials want to make sure you are who you say you are. But isn’t that foolish?When you go to the bank, the teller may ask for a photo ID. Do you refuse to show it? In our culture of identity theft, we all have to prove who we are, and frankly, I’m glad. I feel glad someone else can’t get into my bank account or steal my vote!Your vote is your asset. How does a society ensure someone does not misrepresent you? Instead of a photo ID, would you have us all be fingerprinted?Our only loss of dignity in this realm of voting is when we ignore the fact that too many shysters have stolen others’ identities.Everyone can get a photo ID and it will be required to board an airplane and in many other places.I can’t understand anyone giving up his valuable vote because of misplaced pride! — Edna Walker, Cleburne
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