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Gun Problem A Non-issue For Area Politicians

November 14, 2018

Editor: It is painfully apparent that the recent mass murder of 11 Jews in a synagogue in Pittsburgh will remain a non-issue for all of our area politicians. Prayers will be offered, condolences will be made, tears will be shed and perhaps a new bond that transcends religious differences will be created, but what assurances will be given that such horrific tragedy will never happen again? The answer is of course a definitive none. The blatant difference between our country and the rest of the civilized world is not the vitriol of hate and bigotry that is ingrained in certain human hearts but the reluctance on the part of our lawmakers to restrict gun ownership or at least to do more to prevent guns — especially assault weapons — from falling into the wrong hands. We desperately need a federal ban on the latter but of course we’ll never get it. The apathy and, to a great extent, cowardice, on the part of our solons does not just manifest the egregious stranglehold the NRA has on them, but also the all-but-certain fatal effect that calling for stricter gun control will have on their candidacies. If there is an insidious effect on the American psyche from this cycle, it is that any of us — no matter age, social status, gender, color or ethnic background — could be among the next victims. We are all teetering on the brink as a surreal version of an apocalyptic Wild West continues to play itself out thanks to a great extent to our toady legislators. Let us now attempt to convince, to educate and galvanize each other as we brace ourselves for appropriate courses of action before he next wave of violence occurs. Let us hope it’s not too late before we can “beat our swords into ploughshares.” Sam Troy WILKES-BARRE