uns get a lot of attention in the Lone Star State. But today we are going to talk blades.
That's because a new law went into effect this month allowing Texans to carry Bowie knives, daggers, throwing knives, machetes and even swords, openly or concealed.
Previously the state made it illegal to carry a knife with a blade longer than 5.5 inches. And under the new law there are some places that still carry the 5.5. inches restriction—such as bars, amusement parks, schools, polling places, racetracks, hospitals and churches—and sporting a long blade at these places could land you in prison. But for the most part Texans are now free to strap on a sword, for whatever reason, and venture out into the world.
Now, chances are the Legislature simply meant to make longer pocketknives and the like legal. We doubt they really thought much about swords and machetes. But the law's wording allows just about any bladed instrument.
Critics say that makes the law just plain silly and indulges childish fantasies, perhaps dangerously so. Others are in favor, saying it's about personal freedom.
We want to know what you think. Is the new law a good idea or not? Should it have been more carefully written to exclude swords, machetes and the like?
Send your response (50 words maximum) to firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday, Sept. 19. You can also mail your response to the Texarkana Gazette Friday Poll, at P.O. Box 621, Texarkana, TX 75504 or drop it off at our office, 101 E. Broad St, Texarkana, Ark. Be sure to include your name, address and phone number. We will print as many responses as we can in next Friday's paper.
Last Week: Nike or No?
Last week's question was about shoemaker Nike's advertising alliance with former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Are you boycotting Nike because of the Kaepernick campaign? Or are you against any such boycott?
While people have every right to express their opinions, there is a line that must be honored—our country and what it stands for. Mr. K. needs to put his energy into working with young people to teach them respect and honor. Shame on NIKE for giving this any credit!—D.R., Wake Village, Texas
I am in complete agreement with a boycott of Nike products and I will never buy another product from them. I think it is disgraceful they are featuring the person that started the ongoing disrespecting of the national anthem and our flag. Obviously Nike supports disrespecting our anthem and flag as well. I hope all Americans and members of our military, both past and present, boycott ALL Nike products to send a clear message. We are tired of America being disrespected!—H.P., Texarkana, Texas
No, I will not boycott NIKE for making a deal with former QB Kaepernick to help them sell more NIKE shoes. I will buy NIKE shoes when I want to. However, I've never bought their up-class-expensive shoes. I don't boycott anything that interferes with my happiness. For example, I will watch NFL football, the entire season.—B.J., Texarkana, Texas
Of course, if Kaepernick has a right to influence others by publicly demonstrating his opposition to "racial injustice," those who oppose him have the same right, which I am one. Why? Because his perception is based on gross negative exaggerations, developed by people who distort the truth, that desire to, and would silence any opposition, if they were in control.—D.H.M., Texarkana, Ark.