To the Editor:
Our hearts ache for all those directly affected by the Newtown, Conn., tragedy.
The latest tragedy is a reminder of why we have always supported gun control laws – what civilian ever has a legitimate need for semiautomatic weapons? And while it is people who pull the triggers, aren’t we right to believe that difficulty in getting access to guns might limit their opportunity to pull triggers?
That said, we are naive if we think gun control will stop these tragedies. Until we become more effective at recognizing and addressing the symptoms of mental illness, until we change school cultures so that no kids are left out and alienated, these tragedies will continue.
All three components – gun control; training for all professionals who have contact with young people; and changing school culture, along with supporting parents to help them love and be there for their children – all of those must happen for the tragedies to stop.
Don and Ellen Ljung