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It’s hard to see clearly when you are crying. And you don’t want to operate heavy machinery, drive, or vote on major legislation until you can see clearly.

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We mourn the tragic loss of life that occurred at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. What captured our attention most was the fact that most of the victims were young children.

But I have to ask: are my sons less precious or less important because they are adults and no longer cute? One son is a teacher. Would his death be less tragic if he were killed outside of school? If these twenty children and seven adults were killed separately and individually all across the country, would we have less of a crisis?

The fact is that they are. In Chicago alone, where guns are illegal, about twenty-seven people—men, women, and children—are killed every two weeks. Every two weeks.

So, yes, we have a problem. And there are two basic approaches to solving it.

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One approach is to try to eliminate or minimize the possible weapons that people use to kill each other. The fact is that people have been killing each other since the Garden of Eden. As technology has improved, so has our ability to make weapons that can kill more efficiently and at a quicker pace.

So people are trying to limit access to the more efficient weapons in order to limit the number of people who can be killed at one time by one person. An improvement? Yes. But at what cost?

It’s a bit like requiring every car to make a complete stop at all intersections and no car being able to drive over thirty miles per hour in an effort to limit automobile fatalities. It can help, but trying to eliminate all the risks and dangers in life will only engender a docile and fearful populace more concerned about not failing rather than achieving success.

So why do people need these more advanced weapons anyway? First we need to ask why we need weapons at all. Self-defense and protection of property. But we have police. But sometimes we need to act before the police can arrive.

But why do we need “assault weapons?” Because we can’t assume that it will only be individuals who may threaten us or that their weaponry will be as primitive as that which lawmakers would like to leave us.

When the Second Amendment was written, our nation had just recently freed itself from a tyrannical government, and it acknowledged in its Declaration of Independence that the people have a right to change their government if it abuses its power. Having an armed populace is one of the checks on a growing government encroaching on the rights and freedoms of its people.

But I mentioned a second approach to solving the problem of people killing people. This approach involves inculcating in people respect and even love for each other.

This approach requires the help and support of both the government at all levels and our public schools.

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The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

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