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Are we citizens not allowed to protect our livelihood?

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Posted: Tuesday, June 26, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 6:04 am, Tue Jun 26, 2012.

Recently there've been a few letters to the editor about shooting someone over stealing a case of beer. This same liberal society who believes it's OK to steal a case of beer is the same group who thinks it's OK to kill a baby in the womb — under the guise that it's her body, it is her choice. Well, why can't she be a prostitute? It's her body, it's her choice.

I worked for and managed a store for 30-plus years. I was responsible for everything that went on inside those four walls. Theft is part of the category called "shrinkage." Most of our stores ran over 3 percent. That 3 percent theft was a larger figure than most profit percentages. If the managers didn't make budget, including shrinkage percentages, we were docked on a potential bonus. And if that figure remained over budget for two to three inventories, you could be fired.

Retailers are breadwinners. If someone is taking food off your table, what would you do? As the owner, I don't blame the guy for shooting the beer thief.

Theft at retail stores is no big deal to this liberal society. Cops in Stockton took 8 hours to respond to our Wilson Way store. My store was on Pacific Avenue, and it was county, so the Sheriff responded in usually less than one hour. One day a young woman was caught in my store shoplifting. She had just been cited by the Stockton P.D. for shoplifting at a shop in Hammer Ranch. Now she was getting her second ticket of the day. No jail. When she goes before the judge, he will slap her hands and send her on her way to steal again, and again.

Try stealing from a bank and see what happens. What is the difference? Oh, it is just a case of beer. Try stealing $20 from the bank and see what happens.

Retailing is a way of life for a lot of people. When someone threatens your living, by stealing, I think we have the right to protect our way of living. If you don't want to get shot, don't steal. Simple idea, don't you think?

Dennis Vetica

Lodi

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27 comments:

  • trista aquino posted at 11:12 pm on Fri, Jun 29, 2012.

    trista aquino Posts: 107

    What?! 3%?? Here I am teaching my kid about things like forgiveness and the Importance of life! Oh well, who wants to be the only good guy when there can be 2 bad ones.

     
  • Mike Adams posted at 7:56 pm on Thu, Jun 28, 2012.

    Mike Adams Posts: 1383

    Joanne: Upon some reflection, I think I could suggest what's missing from your friend's assertion that shopping without money is not illegal. So while the conservatives here are busy bemoaning the fate of our country since Obamacare has been up held by the Supreme Court (and especially that turncoat Roberts), let me offer this from some vocation many years distant:
    A crime has what are known as "elements". In order for a crime to take place, these elements must be met. The person has to know what he/she is doing is illegal. The person has to intend to commit a crime. And, for a crime to have been committed, it must have been completed. There is no law against going into a store with no money and filling up a basket with food, liquor, and cigarettes, even if you don't have any money. There is no law about putting something in your pocket while you are at a store.
    These only become actual crimes if the person pushes the now full cart out of the door of the store (and has no money, states she/he has no money, and that she/he knows it's illegal to take items from a store.
    In the second case, the person could state that they were going to pay for it before they left the building and just put it in his/her pocket so they wouldn't lay it down and forget about it. That would be the first thing I would say and there would be no proof that I intended to steal, just puting it into my pocket. Now if you weigh 400 lbs and are sticking frozen turkeys up your moo moo, that's going to be a different story.
    And what action would make this a crime? Going through checkout without notifying the clerk that you're storing a couple of Butterballs up your dress and then walking out. Having an empty purse going into a store and filling it up with bic lighters and Vienna sausages would certainly be evidence that she intended to steal these items.
    Again, was a crime committed? Did the person enter the store intending to steal (burglary...felony) or did they just take advantage of an opportune moment to start preparing for next Thanksgiving (shoplifting...misdemeanor) and again, did they leave or attempt to leave the store.

    While many people get away with this kind of thing, eventually they are caught.

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 12:58 pm on Thu, Jun 28, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    I don't think so, Mr. Baumbach, but I do not have the extensive files you have, nor do I care to place your comments on my hard drive - wasted space.

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 12:56 pm on Thu, Jun 28, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Good info, Mr. Adams. Thanks!

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 12:50 pm on Thu, Jun 28, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Sorry to disappoint, Mr. Baumbach, but since my husband has been the victim of racism often in this town, he does not share your point of view that none exists.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 6:46 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1459

    Thanks Joanne
    Your advice again falls inline with my previous suspicisions[beam]

     
  • Mike Adams posted at 6:11 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Mike Adams Posts: 1383

    Joanne... maybe I can assist with "it is "illegal" to enter a store and pick up items as though one was shopping and subsequently be found to have no money with which to pay. " Shoplifting is a misdemeanor. Stealing something from a store is shoplifting.
    Why having no money becomes important is when someone walks out of the store, with un-paid for merchandise is because the person never intended to pay for the items, and entered the store with the intent to shoplift (misdemeanor) become "burglary" which is a felony. Entering a place of business ( or almost any enclosed space...4 walls and a door) with the intent of committing a crime (shoplifting) is burglary. Having no money indicates that the person never intended to pay and still entered the store (or other 4 walled space) and took items. I tend to think your friend over stated what ever she meant by shopping with no money. Ever go to the mall or window shopping?

    On the item regarding filling up their cart and just walking out.... If you see someone loading single items from a cart into their car, they probably haven't paid for it since normal people put their purchases in bags. Except at Costco. Anyone need 3 gallons of mayonaise?

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:50 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Ms Bobin stated...Previously, he has stated that he has no stance on the issue.

    Ms Bobin of course is lying...you are consistent.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:47 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Ms Bobin stated...I only feel sorry for the ex-Mrs. Vetica. With her new position as an assistant superintendent, she still has to put up with the embarassment of seeing Dennis's continual drivel published for all to see and read.

    Mt sympathy and pity goes out to Mr Bobin who has to suffer the embarrassment of his wife Joanne Bobin who publicly accuses the people of Lodi as being dominated by bigots and racists.I personally think such a good man deserves better.

    He must be so ashamed that he has been in hiding ..Iwish himwell.

     
  • Kevin Paglia posted at 5:25 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2023

    Joanne, the second is not a new thing. When I worked at a 7-11 for my first job I was taught that when someone was acting suspicious to find something to do near the door. There were many times that some kid younger than I would come out from the candy isle, see me there and then turn back to the candy isle. Several twenty year old "men" would see me by the door and turn around to actually pay for the beer in their hands.

    I have no experience as to the first.

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 1:29 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    I only feel sorry for the ex-Mrs. Vetica. With her new position as an assistant superintendent, she still has to put up with the embarassment of seeing Dennis's continual drivel published for all to see and read.

    As for shoplifting - I was recently speaking with a person who works in LP for a local supermarket and learned two interesting tidbits - the first (which I was unable to verify), according to this person, it is "illegal" to enter a store and pick up items as though one was shopping and subsequently be found to have no money with which to pay. Don't know how this would shake out since one would have to be caught stealing the stuff in order to be stopped and discovered to have no money on them.

    The second was that it is a common practice in Lodi (according to her experience) for people to enter a supermarket, load up a cart with items and just plain walk out the door. Many stores do not even attempt to stop people from doing this as they may get injured by the thief. The main tactic to prevent theft is to stalk suspicious acting people and hopefully intimidate them before they walk out with the goods.

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 1:08 pm on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Actually, Mr. Baumbach has only recently come around to the anti-abortion stance because he would hate to betray his best buddy, Mr. Kinderman.

    Previously, he has stated that he has no stance on the issue. Just as he claims to have no religious affiliation, nor is he religious or a Christian, he constantly berates anyone who makes what he perceives to be derogatory statements on religion - unless, of course, they are talking about Islam - then he's like a dog with a bone.

    He is, as always, a hypocrite.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 12:03 am on Wed, Jun 27, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1459

    Geez Darrell
    Lets keep things in context. I'm not a doctor or surgeon so I won't be putting into practice my OPINION as you post implies and being more than 6 decades old I won't be needing any services that are provided to women not to men. I knew you would find opportunity to take a sanctimonious attitude. You choose again not to read the posts where I qualified from rape or incest.

     
  • Mike Adams posted at 10:39 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Mike Adams Posts: 1383

    Joanne: I too wonder how this letter writer links widely different views together. I don't think I've seen any posts on this topic from people who advocate abortion. I'm sure there's a name for this kind of prose, but I don't know what it is, other than a typical right wing rant.

    This writer (using this technique) could have also said "steal from me and I'll shoot you resulting in the loss of everything I've worked for my whole life, probably going to prison, suffering the rest of my life with the emotional trauma from shooting someone over a case of beer.' 'When I get out of prison on parole... people will always whisper "that's the guy who shot and killed some little kid for stealing a loaf of bread because he was hungry""

    See, it won't matter about the facts of the case (like this letter)...people's perception will be that the writer, in protecting his place of business from petty theft, killed or at least shot someone who stole a low value item, it could of course be an expensive item as well, but again, it doesn't matter... in that instant of poor judgment, the ready availability of a firearm, WITHOUT any of the training or knowledge of WHEN and WHY it should be used, ruined his life, the thief's life, the life of his immediate family, lost what ever money he had saved for his kid's college tuition, retirement, vacations, any guns he may own, ... the list goes on and on... all for a case of beer.

    Good letter Mr. Vetica. Maybe you just got your topics mixed up.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 7:20 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Ok... Mr Heuer wants the choice to end the life of an unborn baby... that's your problem... not mine.

     
  • Eric Barrow posted at 3:29 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Eric Barrow Posts: 1513

    Dennis if I catch a kid stealing a bike out of my garage you think I should just plug him from the porch or should I fire a warning shot first.

     
  • Eric Barrow posted at 3:20 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Eric Barrow Posts: 1513

    Darrell I'm comfortable with pro-abortion if you will instead of pro-life refer to your stand as pro-control

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 1:13 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1459

    I disagree of course. If you rest a mans total morality on this issue then you have a very narrow margin of judgement. However there are many measures of moral accounting I posses which prevent me from being bankrupt.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 1:03 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1459

    No apologies necessary I'm not looking for converts. I simply rest my case. A pointless conversation. But "proabortion" is not accurate. If you take preserving the choice as favoring abortion you would be mistaken. If abortion can be avoided that would be preferable. I am against abortion but in the case of rape or incest I want the choice. Most people who are honest with themselves would not want to raise a child resulting from rape. When the child asks whos my daddy well thats going to be a difficlt conversation. If you know the rapist you will have to wonder always what he is saying to his friends about your wife. Its more aggrivating if he doesn't have to go to jail on a technicality. Like
    i say abortion is not desirable by anyone but there are circumstances when it's desurable to have the choice. So I'm prochoice not proabortion.

     
  • Joanne Bobin posted at 12:38 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Good comments, Mr. Heuer. Once again Dennis Vetica writes an idiotic letter in which he makes illogical comparisons - abortion, prostitution, stealing and killing people.

    It is fortunate that he did not have a gun at work during his 30 years in retail - or maybe if he had we wouldn't be subjected to his lunacy today.

     
  • Walter Chang posted at 12:17 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Walt Posts: 1117

    Dennis, did we really need another letter about stealing beer?


    “Pro abortion is more accurate”

    Darrell, I have to agree with you.

    Abortion is murder, plain and simple!!

    Sorry Thomas.

     
  • Craig Cawelti posted at 12:07 pm on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Craig Cawelti Posts: 36

    Congratulations Mr. Heuer on proudly outing yourself as morally bankrupt.

     
  • Thomas Heuer posted at 11:29 am on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    nth degree wise Posts: 1459

    What is this fascination with shooting someone? Nobody is saying theft isn't a big deal Its simply a matter of keeping things in perspective. Its already been said get a surveilance camera. No matter how right you think you are if you shoot someone who is unarmed you're the one going to jail. If your life is threatened thats a different story.

    I can't believe anyone would want to strike up a conversation on abprtion. Another rehash of the same tired positions and no one is going to change their minds. Everyone just gets angry. I am prochoice and not pursuaded by cheap ignorant emotionalism.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:33 am on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Vetica stated...Retailers are breadwinners. If someone is taking food off your table, what would you do? As the owner, I don't blame the guy for shooting the beer thief.

    I would have a hard time shooting someone for taking something from me as I to not value things but life. However, I empathize with a store ower who is in position to have his/her life in danger by the thieves who cause the dangerous events.

    I personally would not be a store owner where my employees or my family were in fear on an on going basis.. this is a tough one.

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:27 am on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    A poster stated...To be clear, the vast majority of people who support a woman's right to choose do not believe that life begins at conception. They no more believe that it is OK to kill a baby than a non Catholic believes that the communion host is literally the body and blood of Christ.
    The power of words...Steve's words project one image that makes him comfortable... let me translate his words into reality.
    To be clear, the vast majority of people who support a woman's ability to end the life of her unborn baby even if for convenience, rationalize and pretend that they are aborting tissue mass as if it were nothing more than a toe nail. She knows it is a baby- but killing it is so horrific that she goes into a state of denial in order to end the life of her precious unborn baby. Unfortunately, after she realizes what she has done, experience regret and anguish that she will never get to sing happy birthday to her child's life she ended.
    Pro choice is such bad terminology...Pro abortion is more accurate. If we want abortion legal as a society then fine.. lets call it what is it and accept responsibility for what we do... kill unborn babies.

     
  • Steve Schmidt posted at 5:05 am on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Steve Schmidt Posts: 2380

    To be clear, the vast majority of people who support a woman's right to choose do not believe that life begins at conception. They no more believe that it is OK to kill a baby than a non Catholic believes that the communion host is literally the body and blood of Christ.

     
  • Steve Schmidt posted at 5:02 am on Tue, Jun 26, 2012.

    Steve Schmidt Posts: 2380

    Mr Vetica wrote: Well, why can't she be a prostitute? It's her body, it's her choice.

    Well Dennis, that certainly is the Libertarian position on the issue. Legalize drugs, prostitution and other "victimless crimes" and let people instead of government decide what to do with their bodies.

    I can't say that I agree with everything the Ron Paulnistas advocate but there is some sense in it too.

     

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