The sad news from Newtown, CT, is mind-boggling. I struggle to recall any comparable incident from our youth, at least in the schools. If it happened, it was an isolated incident, nowhere near a school zone, and carried out as a recurring event in multiple locations.
We were safe because assault weapons didn't exist. Perhaps the greatest predator was polio, and when the Salk vaccine was introduced I recall lining up for a shot in Mason City. My mother was like any other concerned parent who wanted to seize the opportunity to protect her children.
The nation responded to Salk's discovery. And now I wonder if the nation will successfully respond to the slate of gun violence over the past 15 years. As a gun owner, I have no problem with eliminating the type of weapons used in Newtown, or the 30-round clips that were used.
As a former teacher/administrator I find it ludicrous that some individuals including a congressman in Minnesota, are advocating for teachers and administrators having weapons available to them. The fellow from Minnesota has claimed that knowing the school has weapons inside would keep the perpetrator away.
Really? Let's see, the fellow in Newtown who obviously was not of the right mind would be rational enough to pick a different school? Or the kids who shot up Columbine? In their case the greater likelihood is that they would seek out the teacher they knew to be carrying, get the jump and eliminate him before carrying out their carnage elsewhere.
There are no simple solutions, and let's be clear that none of the massacres from Oak Creek, Aurora, Columbine, Portland, or now Newtown are acceptable, but at last we have found our lowest common denominator in Newtown, helpless 6-year-olds who may lift us to take action.
A solution was found for Polio, and a solution, complex as it may be with multiple parts, can be put together to reduce or hopefully eliminate this guy violence. I hope.