Thursday, October 1, 2015

Innocents continue to die despite 'strict gun laws' in N.J.

Construction of a Bergen County Justice Center in Hackensack continues after completion of a second parking garage, right. The garage interior isn't completed. The county is leasing 540 parking spaces at 150 River St., The Record's old headquarters, but that deal was supposed to have ended this past July.


On Page 1 today, The Record insists New Jersey has "strict gun laws," but the paper also continues to report on drive-by shootings and other gun violence in Paterson.

Maybe, Staff Writer Melissa Hayes should quote Governor Christie blowing smoke, as he vainly seeks the GOP presidential nomination, and saying he pardoned three men who supposedly violated those "strict" laws.

Or, the editors should stop reporting, as the Local section did on Sept. 19, that Silk City has seen 46 shootings this year, resulting in eight deaths and injuries to 50 other people.

Or Hayes could report New Jersey has strict gun laws except in minority communities where the police see their job as reducing gun violence, not ending it:

"Our numbers [of shootings] are significantly down from last year," Paterson Police Director Jerry Speziale was quoted as saying on Sept. 19.

In April, a spray of bullets killed a rising 15-year-old basketball star, the third innocent young person killed by Paterson gunfire in less than a year.

Other news

Two non-stories appear on the front page today.

Political Columnist Charles Stile is boring us again with his weekly report on Christie's "image" (A-1)

And a Mahwah police officer -- who saved a college student struck by a pickup after he jaywalked across Route 17 -- is praised for doing his job (A-1).

At the news meeting, Editor Martin Gottlieb reasoned the officer deserves to be on Page 1 because he didn't shoot the student.

Crocodile tears

An editorial condemning NJ Transit for raising fares an average of 9 percent today doesn't even mention Christie's drastic cuts in state subsidies to the agency -- the latest in a series of blows against mass transit (A-18).

"Pay more for less -- not smart policy for a public transit system," the unidentified writer says. "Or, for that matter, for a state."

That editorial could have been referring to readers who subscribe to a daily newspaper that offers them less and less.

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