Unlike our politicians, I still haven’t become numb to our regular American mass shootings, and the news from San Antonio brought me deep despair. Right now, the left and the right are preparing their statements with calculated nods to their constituencies. I don’t care. I already know what they’ll say. Guns can offer security and they can be dangerous. They facilitate both proud heritage and unthinkable carnage. Right now, something needs to change. (Taking everyone’s guns away is as impractical and impossible as arming everyone.) The solution, I hope, lies somewhere in the realm of common sense, caution and respect. No matter what you believe, we need to get to work: background checks, mental health care and even a hard look at our own culture, which has fostered so much rage and isolation and violence, are all steps in the right direction. If you think more regulation is the answer, then you first need to understand hundreds of thousands of responsible armed men and women in our country. If you object to any regulation, you need to first understand how guns fall into the wrong hands and that a culture of immense violence exists in our country.
Eric Oliver, Boise