Dear Kort,

I agree with you on many points. I disagree on others. That is my privilege. You probably would be disappointed if it were otherwise. I DO have criticisms of your writings: Reading “PoC”, it is precisely as if I were reading Wayne LaPierre’s writings in “The American Rifleman” (which I am!). So, what you have to say is rather redundant for me. I concede, however, that probably the majority of Ilians are not “the NRA”, thus - in my opinion - should benefit from being exposed to those points of view.

You state in the latest issue that you yourself haven’t fired a weapon in years. I fire my weapons very rarely and see fewer and fewer reasons to do so (I’m now over 64 years old). Thus, it is clear to me that you are a kindred spirit in BELIEVING in the importance/validity of our constitution. I am an immigrant to this wonderful country of ours. I came here (as a German Jew) in March, 1955. I served 4 yrs. in the USAF. This March, I CELEBRATED my 40th anniversary of being here. (Invited family and best friends to a sumptuous dinner on my account, had a great time!)

Kudos, remarks, and criticisms:

Kudos for publishing a far more interesting newsletter for the region than what my Intertel dues are paying for.

Remarks for the fact that “PoC” IS (!) largely - as I can tell - your very own soapbox; viz. your intent to “take PoC private.” I’m not sure just how I am supposed to take that: Which would - in the end - be more important to you: 1) publish an Intertel newsletter for the region, or 2) disseminate your private view of the world to like-minded individuals?

You are, of course, quite correct in stating that you can only publish what you receive. At the same time, I truly wonder whether the fact that you DON’T receive anything to publish suits you rather well, in that it gives you a good reason to fill PoC with your own material.

I applaud your willingness to bear the cost of publishing PoC. That you state your willingness to “go private” with your view, however, taints that claim. (See my comment under (2) in the paragraph before this one).

Criticisms: Well, I think I’ve already made them known. During my tenure as “Mensagenda” editor, I received a few “congratulations! You’ve got guts!” comments — so, I empathize. I certainly don’t expect you or anyone else to publish views contrary to that person’s convictions. You ARE on a soapbox. Just don’t expect anyone else to agree with you. I don’t grant that right to anyone. My long-standing beef is with “fundamentalist Xtians” who wish nothing more than that everyone in the world should believe exactly the same as they do.

To conclude: It is of little importance whether I agree or disagree with you, at least as far as Intertel is concerned. Intertel is NOT the NRA, Intertel is not even fundamentally a U.S.A. organization (region VII is, but, that’s beside the point, I think). And, while I am a fervent constitutionalist AND a registered Democrat, I’m, in the end, none of any of the above unconditionally. I am an intelligent, thinking, being; I am one who is eminently capable of independent — and eclectic! — thought.

If you are, in the end, forced to “go private”: I will not contribute a single penny to that end; simply because I already read “The American Rifleman” every month...

You have, of course, my permission to publish this letter in the next issue of PoC.

With best regards, if not necessarily in brotherhood/friendship,

J. F. Leo Sommerfeld

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