The Gatling gun and other tools to limit bloodshed

Dr. Richard Gatling lived in a Hartford mansion overlooking the Colt Firearms factory in Dutch Point. His 1861 invention– the first WMD — was built by the Colt company while it was being run by Samuel Colt’s widow Elizabeth. The good doctor said he wanted to limit bloodshed in war, so he created a machine of death powerful enough to scare away the enemy. Also, the gun could limit battlefield deaths, Gatling argued, because we wouldn’t need so many soldiers.

Resident: Willington unwilling to host CT State Police firearms compound

I am a 19-year-old resident of Willington, a town in the Quiet Corner of Connecticut that my family has lived in since 1914. This town of about 6,000 people is living with the fear that their home is on the brink of transformation into something unrecognizable. The state police wish to turn 326 acres of pristine woodland in the heart of our town into a massive training facility and gun range complex.

Malloy gun proposal NOT about terrorism

No one wants terrorists to have guns. However, Gov. Dan Malloy’s recent proposal to ban gun purchases from those who appear on a nebulous terrorist “watch list” is a step too far. There is no doubt that Gov. Malloy is not a big fan of the Second Amendment. Unfortunately, this plan also guts the 14th Amendment due process clause by suspending the right to purchase and potentially confiscating legally owned property without providing ANY evidence to do so.

Require anger management classes to fight violence

The mass shooting at the Umpqua Community College in Oregon has predictably prompted President Barack Obama and others to call for yet more stringent gun control laws “to prevent this from ever happening again.” Never mind that criminals, by definition, do not obey existing laws, and it will happen again. I would venture that no law abiding, gun-owning citizen has ever shot another person except in self-defense or by accident. Yet, in order to feel good about “doing something” to prevent future mass shootings, many people feel that we need yet more gun control laws…

Connecticut can learn from Aaden Moreno’s death

Seven-month-old Aaden Moreno’s lifeless body was recovered from the Connecticut River in Middletown on July 7, three days after he was thrown from the Arrigoni Bridge by his father, Tony Moreno. At a court appearance for the father, who faces criminal charges, a lawyer called the death of the child “a bottomless tragedy,” a description that suggests it could not have been prevented, and its reverberations through countless lives will be never-ending. But as a responsible society, we can and must look closely at how two young parents could be so completely failed by a system that had the tools and the knowledge to intervene, but never made the right connections.

Body cams will help protect police from troublesome citizens, too

I have been a law enforcement officer with a mid-sized municipal agency for almost five years. The debate over whether officers should be wearing body cameras to me seems long overdue, but not for the reasons most are talking about. The reason I believe police should wear body cameras is to me not just a matter of checking our integrity and conduct (although that certainly will be a benefit), but is more a matter of checking the integrity and conduct of the people we come into contact with.

Body cameras are a benefit to all Connecticut

Cell phone or closed circuit video give hints, conflicting testimony often raises doubts, and the ensuing debate often leaves the public’s confidence in law enforcement severely shaken. For all our benefit, we should have a neutral account of police encounters in Connecticut. The new Connecticut state law that will provide funding for the implementation and use of body cameras by every police officer in Connecticut is beneficial not only for the general public, but for law enforcement as well.

Body cameras on Connecticut cops — a help or not?

New state law providing funding and standards for the use of police body cameras will go into effect in October, signaling a new era of oversight of law enforcement officers. How effective do you think this law will be? CTViewpoints invites you to contribute your insights on this new legislation from your perspective as a citizen, civil rights advocate, law enforcement official or other interest group.

Court reform must follow death of little Aaden Moreno

Though we want to think it is so, the recent death of 7-month-old Aaden Moreno at the hands of his father was not a rare event, but an all-too-common outcome of a child custody case. The child’s mother had sought a protective order based on the father’s history of abuse and threats against the mother and child. There is now a substantial body of scientific research that would make family court judges’ jobs easier, but our children will not be protected until we rely on domestic violence experts instead of general practitioners and integrate this important research into the standard court practices. The Safe Child Act is an evidence-based approach requiring that the health and safety of children must be the first priority in all custody and visitation decisions.