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Morning Sun
  • OUR VIEW: What’s worth the tradeoff?

  • It caught our attention at this week’s trash meeting when City Manager Daron Hall talked about tradeoffs.

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  • It caught our attention at this week’s trash meeting when City Manager Daron Hall talked about tradeoffs.
    Namely, he said that there is a public trade-off being made by valuing the freedom of choice of trash haulers over the long-term wear and tear costs of public streets. He didn’t say this as a matter of accusation, but rather as a matter of fact.
    And he’s right. Those who have been most vocal have been willing to make that trade. Freedom of choice is valued above all else, and that drives all other decisions.
    That got us thinking about other issues in the news, and what tradeoffs are being made and proposed. We say this not as a complaint, but as an observation.
    For instance, it appears that taking a hardline stance on one’s views in Washington is more valued than the ability to compromise.
    The art of brinksmanship is valued more than preventing crises ahead of deadlines.
    But mostly, it got us thinking about gun control. Yes, the issue is complex, and yes, the issue is not likely to be solved by any one plan. Certainly mental health services need to be discussed and the effects of the entertainment industry might need to be examined. But those issues distract from the central focus.
    After the tragedies in Aurora, Colo., and Newtown, Ct., not to mention the shooting of Rep. Giffords in Arizona, the issue of gun control is probably as hot-stove as it will ever be. Vice President Biden is leading a series of conversations to consider possibilities of restrictions, laws, etc. Effectively, the time to talk about gun control tradeoffs has arrived.
    It’s a simple question. For some, the tradeoff they are willing to make is that in order to get more security forces into schools, they are willing to sacrifice the lack of freedom granted by the presence of additional security forces.
    For some, in light of these most recent tragedies, they believe it’s time to make the trade of giving up access to assault rifles or high-capacity gun magazines to prevent tragedies involving guns. For them, the extra feeling of security is worth giving up rights or access to guns, and the safety and security some feel that guns provide.
    So that brings us back to the question of tradeoffs. No one is willing to let the status quo continue. There have been too may national tragedies, too many deaths, too many tears shed to believe that nothing can change going forward.
    And if the status quo isn’t working, there is a tradeoff to be considered. Which do we value more: the feeling of safety and security provided by ceding certain gun rights, or the feeling of safety and security provided by ceding the perception of freedom?
    Page 2 of 2 - And it’s a question we can’t answer for people, because it’s an individual choice. But we think it’s important to not only know the consequences of the choices, but to recognize that a choice is being made.
    It’s time to ask ourselves -- in our minds, in our families, in our communities, in our states, in our nation -- what do we value?
     
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