Finding Common Ground
By Harry Kirsbaum
aybe this is the turning point,
when gun enthusiasts and Sec-
ond Amendment true believers
sit across the table from gun control
advocates to find some kind of reason-
able common ground.
Maybe this is the turning point when
legislators and number crunchers sit
across the table from doctors and law-
yers and hospital administrators to find
a way to better help families whose
potentially dangerous mentally ill fam-
ily members may harm themselves or
Nancy Lanza broke no laws purchas-
ing the 9mm Glock and 9mm Sig Sauer
handguns, the shotgun and the AR-15
semi-automatic rifle. She broke no laws
taking her son Adam to the gun range
to teach him how to shoot. She didn't
break any laws, period.
No laws were broken until the mo-
ment that Adam, 20, killed his mother
with one of those weapons, then drove
to Sandy Hook Elementary School in
Newtown, Conn., and took the lives of
six adults and 20 children before killing
No laws were broken, but fatal errors
in judgment were plentiful.
Adam had issues. He was withdrawn,
had temper tantrums until he was 10,
had few friends. Police are still trying to
gather facts on his life, and maybe they
will be able to answer the million-dol-
lar question: Knowing what she knew,
how could Nancy take her troubled
son to a gun range instead of a doctor?
The problem isn't just about guns or
mental illness or violent video games
or our violent society. It's all of them
bundled up into one sickening pack-
We have to sit down together and
figure this out. The NRA, which shut
down its Facebook page immediately
after the Sandy Hook shootings, said
in a prepared statement,"The NRA is
prepared to offer meaningful contri-
butions to help make sure this never
happens again:' It announced a press
conference for Dec. 21.
Whether the organization, which
just days before the shooting thanked
its Facebook followers
for the millions °Mikes,"
decides to support an
assault weapons ban
or close the gun show
loophole that allows
Flowers for those who died in the Sandy Hook shootings
unlicensed sellers to sell
guns without conduct-
ing a background check
into a movie theater during a midnight
remains to be seen.
showing of The Dark Knight Rises in
In terms of handguns, rifles and
Aurora, Colo., in July and calmly killed
assault weapons, we need a national
12 people and injured 58 with an as-
debate that leads to federal laws. Even
sault weapon, some said that if people
though California has one of the strict-
in the crowd were armed, they could
est gun laws in the nation, it doesn't
have taken him out.
make the state any safer if a Californian
Yes, it makes perfect sense for un-
who doesn't have the qualifications to
trained citizens to pull their weapons
own a gun can simply buy one across
and shoot at a person in in the dark
the border in Arizona.
with hundreds of audience members
This tragedy will happen again.
screaming and running from their
There's no stopping a sick person from
seats. What could go wrong there?
getting his hands on a weapon and
Vice President Joe Biden has been
taking lives. We can question whether
appointed to lead a government-wide
principals or teachers should carry,
gun initiative that will attempt to seek
or everyone should be armed to the
a solution.This will not shrink govern-
ment, but do we really want a shrink-
When James Eagan Holmes walked
ing government in this matter?
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