Details are sketchy, but at least one gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut this morning, reportedly killing more than 20 people. As of noon central time, the latest reports indicate that 18 children may have been murdered along with nine adults, including the killer.
White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters at a briefing, “today is not the day” to discuss gun control legislation. Of course it isn’t. Tomorrow won’t be the right time either, and neither will next week or next month or next year. Democratic Party officials are no longer willing to advocate for gun control in public, and the Republican Party might as well be a wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Rifle Association. Americans just have to accept that dangerously unstable or mentally ill people will be able to acquire almost any kind of weapons and ammunition, and from time to time will slaughter innocent people.
I can’t imagine what those children and the victims’ families are going through in Connecticut, and I’m too upset to look up more links about this tragedy. Feel free to share your own reasoned comments or enraged rants in this thread.
UPDATE: Shooter Adam Lanza killed 20 children and six adults, including his mother, before apparently killing himself. A lot of details and links are on this page at the Mother Jones site.
Conservatives are quick to say crimes like these aren’t about guns. Not holding my breath waiting for them to increase funding for mental health services.
After Australia reformed its gun laws in 1996, gun-related homicides and suicides began to decline more sharply, even as the overall homicide rate continued to drop. There have not been any mass shootings in Australia since that time.