Monday December 31, 2012

Your Dec. 26 editorial, "NRA blasts away," was excellent. After the NRA shut down its Facebook and Twitter accounts in the wake of the Newtown murders, I had a flicker of hope. Finally, I thought, they get it. The NRA will continue to promote safe, responsible, legal gun ownership, but they will no longer lobby to keep weapons of human destruction in our malls, college campuses, high schools and elementary schools.

I could not have imagined the NRA response as announced by Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre in my wildest fantasies. After days of not tweeting and updating on Facebook, the best solution they could come up with was to put guns in every school! I have worked in elementary schools for over 30 years, and I know adding guards and guns to a school will not prevent senseless acts of violence and may create an increased risk of more killing both intentional and accidental. It will also add to the anxiety of all and make our schools’ priority of ensuring all students learn even more difficult.

The NRA news shot a hole in my hope. They are sticking with business as usual even after the previously unimaginable massacre of very young children. Every one of those children shot in the Newtown, Conn. school with a semi-automatic assault rifle died.


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While the tragedy continues to haunt me, a second black cloud has descended over us. Put more guns in schools, blame the media, the entertainment industry, and video games and wait for the next assault weapon disaster.

We need to work to remove those weapons, whose designed purpose is to kill many humans quickly, from all civilian hands. Then perhaps, our streets, theaters, malls, and schools will become safe once again.

TOM WELCH

Williamstown