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Details on 'Ricin letter' to Mayor Bloomberg

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.
May 30, 2013 1:27:49 PM PDT
We were so horrified by the well-organized and precision attacks on Sept. 11. And while those terrorists inflicted so much death and destruction, the hard truth is that we are, as we're seeing, just as vulnerable to the individual whackos of every political stripe and nationality.

The Boston Marathon bombings last month and the recent ricin-laced letters certainly prove that.

The ricin attacks and that's what they are, attacks represent attempted murder; that the letters didn't kill anyone is the good news. Who sent them? That's the mystery.

We now know more about why they were sent. The letters sent to Mayor Bloomberg, the gun control group he heads, and to Pres. Obama contained sick, vile and disturbing references to the author's right to have guns. In fact, he was so rabid about it, he said he planned to shoot and kill anyone who tried to even come to his house. Here's the letter:

"You will have to kill me and my family before you get my guns. Anyone wants to come to my house will be shot in the face. The right to bear arms is my constitutional God-given right and I will exercise that right 'til the day I die. What's in this letter is nothing compared to what I've got planned for you."

If you're a gun advocate, I just can't imagine you're doing anything but cringing at this. At least I hope that would be your response.

The level of the ricin is very low, sources tell ABC News. But that doesn't minimize the danger.

For the public, there's another mystery: When should we be alerted that the chief executive officer of the largest city in the nation ? the man whose job is often described as the second most important elected office in the country ? has had deadly poison mailed to him? It makes sense that not every threat is made public. But when two of the NYPD's elite ESU members become sick from handling the letter, then why does the NYPD and City Hall wait from Saturday to Wednesday afternoon to alert the public? It's news ? but it's far more than just news. It's a matter of public safety.

The NYPD says it wanted to wait until the tests confirmed it was ricin, but the hard truth is that officials had a pretty dang good idea it was poison from the get-go ? that's why the letter was stopped and examined.

We'll have the latest on the ricin letters to Mayor Bloomberg and his anti-gun campaign, and another to Pres. Obama, (No ricin confirmation on that yet) tonight at 11.

Also at 11, so how long does this heat last, and will we have an official heat wave? That's 3 days of 90-plus degrees. Meteorologist Amy Freeze, in for Lee Goldberg, has her AccuWeather forecast.

And remember the brouhaha (should that be brew-haha?) over Coors Light putting the Puerto Rican flag on its cans to commemorate the Puerto Rican Day Parade next month? Coors is a sponsor, but today because of the angry backlash from some Puerto Ricans, Coors is pulling the flags from the cans.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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