A U.S. horror story: guns and dead children
The Kansas City Star
The early reports from Newtown, Conn., are horrific, with 27 people dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School, including 18 children.
That would make it one of the worst mass shootings in the nation’s history.
And all of the familiar discussions have been reignited - and rightfully so.
How safe can we make our schools?
When will effective gun control be taken more seriously in America?
How will these kinds of incidents affect our children in the future?
Details about the killings and how they occurred will come out in the next few hours and days. How we as a nation respond to this information could change forever how our schools operate and how we treat guns in this society.
Regarding school safety, early reports are that this was a locked building. How much farther can you go than that, especially with elementary schools? Again, though, we need to find out how the shooter or shooters got in, and whether proper procedures were followed.
But school officials across the nation will be looking at that information very closely.
As for gun control, with an estimated 270 million guns in the hands of civilians in the United States, this incident is one more example of how we must have rational discussions about gun safety in this nation.
Keep in mind that the vast majority of guns used in mass shootings were legally obtained. That means the nation should take a look at how to tighten up the procedures on who should be able to get guns.
Difficult to do? Absolutely. Needed? Absolutely.
Finally, don’t overlook this fact:
In the world of social media, it’s impossible to shield children from the events that happened today. Parents across this country will field questions from their children about what happened, why it happened and who would do this.
It’s the kind of incident that will make some children afraid to go back to school. Or to feel as safe as they once did there.
Beyond killing two dozen or more people, the gunman or gunmen changed a lot about this country and its views of schools and guns on a Friday morning in Connecticut.