COMMUNITY COMMENT: Strengthening family the first step to ending violence

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I have read both the left and right opinion pieces with respect to the gun control issue. I agree in part with both sides. I do believe it is too easy in some cases to get assault type weapons, but I also understand that people who want guns will get them, no matter what law you put in place.

I do believe as a country we need to do a better job identifying people with mental illness, but mental illness was not the only issue with this young man in Connecticut.

Columnist Richard Cohen states all these statistics, which we love during times like this, but statistics can be greatly skewed anyway you want them to be. My follow up question would be how many of those children had a full-time mother and father in the home. Columnist Jay Ambrose wants us to believe that this young man had mental illness, which, best I can tell, has not been proven yet, unless you go on the presumption that anyone that kills someone else is mentally disturbed. If he did have a form of autism (Aspergers), this type of behavior is not characteristic of this at all, and in fact, is the exact opposite.

However, I believe both sides miss the mark. The moral fiber of this country is decaying; the family unit has been torn apart by many factors, among them divorce, the economy, the removal of God from almost every public place. The question we should be asking ourselves is how do we put the family unit back together, not how we can get the government more involved in our lives? When our leaders cannot show common decency to each other, how do we expect our children to do so?

Public figures all the way to the president attack each other on a daily basis; maybe they need God in their lives also. When we as a country decide to put God back into our lives and decide that family is more important than anything, then maybe we can start showing love to each other.

The amount of violence we expose our children to today via the movies, television and video games does not help society. When we as society are OK with violence everywhere but not with God, we have lost our way.

So in summary, this issue is not as simple as some would imply, that if we ban guns, problem solved or fix mental health care, problem solved.

Restore the family unit and put God (does not matter what God you believe in) back into our lives and maybe then we will start treating people with respect.

Michael P. Stefurak is a resident of Evansville.


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