The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

June 27, 2013

Our Readers Speak - Thursday, June 27, 2013

My earlier letter was intended to point out Rahall’s hypocrisy

On May 29, The Register-Herald printed a letter I submitted. I was surprised to receive a phone call from Congressman Rahall two days later. He informed me that he received an A+ rating with the NRA.

After speaking with Mr. Rahall, I realized that my letter was misunderstood. My purpose was not to challenge the stance that our elected officials take on gun rights. However, it was to point out the utter hypocrisy that Mr. Rahall has consistently demonstrated in Congress.

Going back to the letter I submitted, you will see that I questioned his association with a political party that has worked very hard in recent months to take such freedoms as gun rights away from us. Mr. Rahall may have voted in line with the NRA but, where was he when major players in the Democratic Party stood on the Capitol steps and called for various intrusive gun control laws to be passed?

The truth is that he was silent and his silence speaks volumes. It seems that Mr. Rahall is more concerned about his own political agenda, his position on various committees and the potential financial support for future campaigns from a party that fundamentally disagrees with the stance he claims to take on gun rights than he is concerned with fighting for the rights of the West Virginians he claims to represent.

By Mr. Rahall’s own admission he considers himself to be a moderate Democrat. In my opinion this is an admission of being a fence-rider. To me, there is nothing worse than someone who won’t take a stand one way or the other. He cannot play to both sides.

A great man once said, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” We must stop sending representatives to Washington who silently stand by and watch while their political buddies fight to take our rights away.

If Mr. Rahall continues to stand by and watch our rights and guns being ripped from our hands, it’s necessary for the good men and women of  West Virginia to stand up and do something about our representatives who ride the fence and do nothing while evil triumphs.

Mr. Rahall, if you are unwilling to take a vocal stand against those in your party who try to take our rights away, please step aside so we can elect someone who will.

Michael Stelzig