As all of you, I too have been in total shock over what happened in Newtown, Connecticut yesterday. Hearing the horror of 26 people, including 20 children ages 5-10 being gunned down in cold blood is sickening. It makes it hard to be "proud" of our nation, especially considering how much this has happened.
I posted on Facebook yesterday that now is the time to talk about what we need to do. I was wrong on that. Instead Ezra hits the nail on the head:
Only with gun violence do we respond to repeated tragedies by saying that mourning is acceptable but discussing how to prevent more tragedies is not. “Too soon,” howl supporters of loose gun laws. But as others have observed, talking about how to stop mass shootings in the aftermath of a string of mass shootings isn’t “too soon.” It’s much too late.
It is much too late. The fact that 20 children will never grow up now because we are too afraid to talk about gun control, like every other modern nation has, speaks volume to the idiocy that governs this nation and helps pick our leaders.
We are hearing stories like this all too often anymore. Gun control isn't the only topic of debate though. We need to figure out what drives our people to commit such atrocities. We need to debate the mental health system of this country, the very system that started being eroded just a few short years before Columbine.
What indicators do we miss on these people? In a time when most of our thoughts and views are expressed openly in social media, how is it that we don't see things like this coming?
This part of the discussion is every bit as important as the issue of gun control. Even if the shooter, Adam Lanza, was deemed to unstable to own a gun, it wouldn't have changed this since he didn't own a gun. Instead he stole the guns from his mother, right before shooting her.
What we need to do is bring together everyone, leaving out the extremists on all sides. We need to open up a national discussion on these issues and try to figure out a way to prevent future ones. We will never rid ourselves of such tragedy, but if we can reduce the number of incidents then the work, arguments and headaches are beyond being worth is.