Letter to the editor: Initiative 1639 deprives women of right to protect themselves

To the editor:

Initiative 1639 is an affront to the dignity of women in our state.

For college-aged women living in dorms, navigating parking garages, starting an early shift at work or ending a late one, and especially for mothers under the age of 21 — the message is clear: your right to defend yourself at the hands of a violent predator, even an estranged romantic partner – doesn’t matter until you’re 21 years old.

For a young woman, what will stop an unknown intruder in the night? Restraining orders get violated, emergency responders can take too long, and cell phones can be out of reach or destroyed during a physical altercation.

No serious person can look a mother in the eye and tell her that she doesn’t deserve free and fair access to the one thing that might protect her and her children in the crucial seconds that stand between her and tragedy — a firearm.

It is the fundamental duty of government to provide for the security of its citizens, especially the most vulnerable among us, and the wording of our state constitution is clear: “The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired”.

Initiative 1639 threatens to create a class of young female victims by depriving them of their rights.

Please vote no!

Maggie Mae
Lynnwood

14 Replies to “Letter to the editor: Initiative 1639 deprives women of right to protect themselves”

  1. Although I appreciate your thoughts on the right of protection, tell that to the families of Parkland, Sandy Hook and Columbine to name a painful few. I will be boting “Yes”.

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  2. Just a thought.
    Since young men commit so many gun related crimes and so few women do [and are so often the victims of crime] would it be possible to have an age restriction for women of over 18 but an age restriction for men of 21?
    Just wondering.
    I plan to vote no although there parts of 1639 that I support. If it were to be amended after failing I might support it.

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    1. Oh Dave, you certainly have a sense of humor. Men are so irresponsible. You might suggest this new platform to the DNC. Maybe men should not be allowed to drive, get married, or join the military until the age of 21. Maybe the age of 25 sounds even better for men.

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  3. Dave – thank you for your kindness in continuing to look for a solution. I appreciate your willingness to seek alternatives.

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  4. To be clear that’s exactly why I had penned my opinion as a estranged romantic partner. I think that there are a lot of young men who may want to or need to protect themselves as well. Men also suffer at the hands of violence from both men and women and should be able to protect themselves if needed.

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  5. anyone ever hear of – mace?

    i’m sure there are some other means of protection

    remember – pulling out a gun means you’re ready to use it. where is that bullet going? are you ready to stand trial for murder? can someone take it away from you and use it on you? how comfortable are you with it? how well do you know it? practice often?

    is a gun – really??? – the best means of defense for these women?

    while i haven’t read the initiative yet, from what little i’ve heard, it sounds like it will create more law-breaking citizens…

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    1. As a survivor of a home invasion, I strongly urge everyone to vote NO on 1639. For women, a firearm levels the fight between her and her attackers. For a woman her firearm protects life by empowering her with the ability to protect her loved ones. Initiative 1639 is a deceptive initiative that was paid for by three billionaire men from King County who enjoy armed security 24/7. All major law enforcement groups have come out against the initiative because it does nothing to reduce crime. It will not make schools or communities safer. This initiative will make many women defenseless targets of criminals. Vote No on 1639!

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      1. Kanye West told Trump that the illegal guns in Chicago are the problem, not the legal ones. Especially in minority neighborhoods, lawabiding citizens are prohibited from having guns because every house has a felon who maybe got pinched for something non-violent like pot. Biggie rapped about single moms who are defenseless, who cant “maintain”. Democrats never wanted POC to have guns.

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  6. As a woman who would NEVER use a gun to defend myself, I do have other means of learning to defend myself. Mostly I worry about defending myself FROM anyone with a gun. When I’m shopping, even at a grocery store, I realize that there may be people with guns around, and that they could use them in an aggressive manner rather than a defensive manner.

    I’ve worked and traveled overseas where people don’t carry guns, went out by myself and felt MUCH safer that I do in my own country. Please take a look globally. How does our country measure up with statistics of gun violence? With violence of theft? I think you’ll be surprised at the findings.

    I HOPE no one in a dorm room is EVER allowed a gun!!!!!!!! If you allow women to carry, then men will also carry. Let’s keep safe by learning self defense, street-smarts, dealing with the opioid crisis, and supporting security guards and police.

    Vote YES on 1639!

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  7. I like to think outside the box. I find it to be entertaining, educational and sometimes very profitable.
    How about we let little people carry guns [male and female] but not big people [until they are 21]? That would solve the gender issue, and give smaller people a fighting chance to defend themselves.
    Big guns for little people and little guns for big people?
    I am 63 years old and much wiser than I was at 18, as well as less impulsive. I can’t see any need for an 18 year old to have a high capacity magazine small caliber rifle unless they are in the military, where they are highly trained and constantly supervised.
    I belong to the NRA, I support the 2nd Amendment, I oppose banning high capacity magazine small caliber rifles, but we do have limits. Fully automatic weapons have been strictly controlled since the mid thirties. No one is advocating private ownership of weapons of mass destruction.
    I would defend anyone’s right to NOT own a gun, but I will also defend my right to protect myself and my family. I am voting no on 1639.

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  8. This is a false and purposely misleading scenario; yet another fear mongering “oh my god they are coming for our guns” NRA-style propaganda piece. The title of this letter might as well be “Author Promotes Semiautomatic Assault Rifles for Young Mothers’ Protection”.

    I-1639 raises the age to 21+ for semiautomatic assault weapons ONLY.

    Under this measure, semiautomatic assault rifles would be added to the current law restricting the PURCHASE of handguns for a person under the age of 21 (see current law link below). However, a shotgun or non-assault style rifle are options that will NOT be restricted by I-1639.
    As other commenters have stated, there are personal protection options such as pepper spray, taser, or an air-horn. That said, if a firearm is the deterrent of choice, no REASONABLE person- let alone a young mother with small children at home or a student in a college dorm- would choose a semi-automatic assault rifle!

    Originally designed for military use and outlawed for private ownership prior to 2004, the semi-automatic assault rifle was designed for speedy reloading in combat situations, it can fire dozens of rounds in seconds, and has been used in many mass-shootings- including the 2016 Mukilteo shooting.

    Again, semiautomatic assault rifles are the only weapon I-1639 raises the purchase age on.

    In addition to raising the age to purchase a semiautomatic assault rifle, 1-1639’s common-sense safeguards will require enhanced background checks, a 10-day waiting period, firearm safety training, and that gun owners properly secure their firearm when it is not on their person. These measures, combined with the Extreme Risk Protection Order Act passed in 2016 and 2017’s SB 6298- which added domestic violence harassment to the list of offenses for which a person is prohibited from possessing a firearm- will work together to reduce gun violence.

    So, if you really want to protect young women, vote yes on I-1639.

    https://yeson1639.org/learn-more/

    http://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.240

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  9. I got a question to ask. I believe in safe storage of weapon so. I live alone can my handgun still be used for self-defense in my house or does it have to be locked up I’m very very confused about this initiative thank you I appreciate your feedback..

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