Americans should not give up their freedoms

I begin each day by updating myself on world events, the national news and the local news. As I listen, watch and read, I become more saddened that we as a nation are being persuaded to believe that the rights and privileges we were founded on somehow are no longer relevant.

Our founding fathers declared our independence and went to war because the tyrannical leaders of the time tried to tax them without fair representation and take away their arms and religious freedoms. What happens today when some leaders try to cast light on the foolishness some are buying into? They are made to look disconnected from reality. Case in point: two outspoken critics of the NY SAFE Act, Sheriff Timothy Howard and Carl Paladino. Both of these men are trying to wake up the general population of gun owners, sportsmen and collectors to the shortcomings of this very flawed legislation. To date, both have been taken to task by the media and other political interests.

These men have taken great risk in addressing the injustice of this legislation, as well as the lack of good it is doing to prevent criminals from committing acts of violence. Reminiscent of the beginning of our nation, government – our own in this case – is trying to disarm its citizens, tax the working class out of existence and attack our religious and privacy rights.

To see the effect of the taxes and fees, look at your utility bills, buy some gasoline or register an automobile, just to name a few. I have sat at hearings about the NY SAFE Act with Howard and heard him and many others highlight the shortfalls of this legislation. I have stood shoulder to shoulder with Paladino at protests and rallies in the cold and rain. These men are not giving up on our freedoms. Why are we?

Paul J. Ziolkowski