Las Vegas. Oct. 1, yet another mass shooting in the USA. A tragedy yes, but a surprise no. Actually as American as apple pie.
Depending on the definition, we have a few hundred mass shootings a year and the rate is climbing. This is staggeringly more common than in any other developed country. Is this the American exceptionalism we want? Does this make America great? Isn’t it time we all look at each other and admit we have a problem and need help?
Recommendations for moments of silence and prayer are of little long-term help. Gun violence should be seen as one of our major public health problems and addressed as such. Fortunately, well-proven mitigation strategies exist. These might include bans on military style weapons, background checks, licensing of all guns, limitations on the number of weapons and the amount of munitions available to an individual, gun buy backs, education, and the like. Canada, England, Scotland and Australia have followed this path with great success. Why can’t we? Or, as Michael Moore asks, “Are we a nation of gun nuts or are we just nuts?”