The day before the one-year anniversary of the Newtown massacre, there was another school shooting in Colorado. There will be investigations, search for a motive and vigils. And, inevitably, the mental health of the shooter will be raised.
Mental illness is not the problem. We have always had mentally unstable people, but they couldn’t get guns. Open access to schools is not the problem. The Columbine school had an armed police officer who shot at the shooters. We have always had gangs, but they used fists in the past. We have always had dangerous neighborhoods, but they weren’t rife with guns.
The overproduction and proliferation of guns are the problem, and cutting their number is the only answer. The U.S. Supreme Court decided in Heller – the case all gun advocates use to justify supporting the unfettered availability of guns – that “like all rights, the 2nd Amendment rights are not unlimited. Nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms.”
When will we say enough is enough?
Eleanor G. Kinnaird