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Though polling routinely reveals most Americans need congressional motion to handle gun violence, Congress stays caught in a perennial logjam largely alongside partisan strains.
Yet it does appear there’s one key voice lacking that may assist lend helpful perspective to Congress. The proliferation of weapons makes policing exponentially extra harmful. In flip, police perceptions of the risk from weapons has been on the coronary heart of current police-involved shootings, together with the heartbreaking deaths of Amir Locke and Philando Castile.
Police and their skilled associations might play a really constructive position right here in deepening understanding of how the proliferation of weapons has impacted their jobs. I earnestly surprise what our native and nationwide police skilled associations are doing or will do to guide at this necessary second. It could be nice to see rank-and-file police utilizing these pages and the halls of Congress to share the experiences of how gun violence impacts their jobs. Told thoughtfully, these tales may in the end assist carry our communities a bit nearer collectively on the trail to a greater, completely different future.
Robert Spaulding, St. Paul
It appears odd that 18-year-olds are, underneath present regulation, deemed too immature to buy beer or cigarettes. Yet they’re free to purchase an AR-15 and all of the ammunition they will afford.
Universal background checks fail to establish gun purchasers who, although harmful, have managed to keep away from the info gatherers. An efficient, bright-line age restriction on the acquisition of assault weapons and ammunition would have saved lives at Columbine, Sandy Hook, Parkland, Buffalo and Uvalde (and these are solely the mass taking pictures incidents that got here to thoughts and not using a Google search).
Thoughts and prayers? We’ve been praying for many years. Let’s give considering a attempt.
Frederick Grunke, St. Cloud
It is unfathomable that Republicans but once more trot out psychological well being as the one explanation for murder-by-gun within the United States. I don’t argue with the psychological well being disaster in our nation. A current research confirmed 40% of adults suffered anxiousness or melancholy in the course of the pandemic, up from 10% in 2019. More than 50% of younger adults had anxiousness or melancholy, with double the substance abuse or suicidal ideation of different adults.
But Republicans have constantly voted in opposition to efforts to fund all elements of well being care, from denying enlargement of Medicaid to pushing for privatized Medicare. They proceed to interact the Einstein madness precept, doing the identical factor whereas anticipating completely different outcomes.
If we want to scale back psychological sickness, we have to fund it. If we want to scale back navy killing in our streets, we have to get rid of entry to navy armaments within the untrained normal populace.
Mary C. Kemen, Chanhassen
It is probably going that the Texas bloodbath will trigger a number of public officeholders to ship vociferous heartfelt ideas and prayers to the bereaved households and to inform media retailers that such clearly mentally in poor health shooters have to be stopped. However, those self same officeholders will fail to establish the actual downside, which is that it’s simply too simple to acquire a firearm.
There are actually over 400 million weapons owned by Americans. The FBI Supplemental Homicide Report for 2012 states there have been 259 justifiable gun-related homicides (an excellent use of a gun), 8,342 prison gun homicides, 20,666 suicides with weapons, and 548 deadly unintentional shootings. Do the numbers, folks! This is a number of lifeless folks yearly for the love of weapons and to guard in opposition to the likelihood that the British may need to recolonize us.
Do you suppose we would begin with the modest requirement of common background checks for all gun gross sales? Is that an excessive amount of to ask? The reply will likely be sure, it’s an excessive amount of to ask. If the deaths of 20 younger kids in Newtown, Conn., 10 years in the past couldn’t carry cheap change at a time when the United States was rather less politically craven, now we have no probability now. We all must be very, very ashamed of ourselves.
George Riedl, Minneapolis
Liz Navratil’s wonderful and balanced article (“Police transformation nonetheless unfinished,” May 25) on the efforts by our metropolis’s leaders to rework public security gave us a number of examples of incremental progress (“pockets of hope”) that deserve our encouragement. However, our metropolis’s leaders seem to have sidelined any efforts to implement the necessities for rapid motion contained within the damning report of the Minnesota Department of Human Rights. Mayor Jacob Frey agreed that MDHR’s findings have been “horrific” and “repugnant” and required the town to do a “hell of a number of work,” however then introduced final week that negotiations over a consent decree with MDHR have been placed on maintain due to a disagreement with MDHR over the findings of discriminatory surveillance contained within the report (“Mpls. police talks placed on maintain,” May 21).
There are further unrelated “horrific” and “repugnant” findings within the MDHR report that require rapid negotiation of a consent decree, together with three further particular actions that have to be applied now with out ready for a consent decree — one, rapid modifications to enhance police accountability and oversight; two, rapid enhancements to the standard of Minneapolis police coaching; and three, rapid provision for sincere communication with members of the general public, particularly relating to essential incidents. Our metropolis’s leaders ought to put aside the disputed findings for separate dialogue, whereas publicly committing enthusiastically and unequivocally to complying with all different elements of the MDHR report, together with rapid re-engagement relating to the consent decree.
John Satorius, Minneapolis
Now metropolis authorities is stonewalling the police reform consent decree course of with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights. The mayor at first stated he was shocked and horrified by the division’s report on a decade of police violence and racism right here. Now the town desires to cease speaking about change, claiming that the Human Rights of us didn’t present sufficient background knowledge.
More possible is that the town desires to delay the dialogue of reform till the U.S. Department of Justice finishes its report. The hope could also be that the federal authorities will paint a nicer image of our police than the state authorities did. Not possible. The feds will see the identical large issues that the Human Rights Department noticed. Then we will likely be advised to attend till the United Nations research the cops within the metropolis of Minneapolis.
Our metropolis authorities does not need to change the police. The demand for reform is an enormous political scorching potato they usually need to preserve throwing it up within the air — possibly it can cool off. Or possibly not.
John Stuart, Minneapolis
I used to be so disillusioned when Gary Marvin Davison’s current commentary devolved from a wonderful counterargument to the current opinion piece about political primaries to a different motive to as a substitute place all the blame on our system of public education, and notably instructor preparation (“No, failing faculties are the ‘main’ explanation for political failure,” Opinion Exchange, May 26). The latter argument is typical of his items and affords a tiresomely slender perspective.
He appears unable or unwilling to distinguish preparation in pedagogy (basically, the right way to educate) from preparation in content material (what to show). Anyone actually reviewing the state’s instructor preparation requirements will see that each are clearly and deeply represented. Anyone reviewing the supply of these requirements in faculties and universities will see the extent to which content material requirements are delivered by school within the disciplines and pedagogy by education school. Approaches like child-centered studying don’t change a concentrate on content material information however quite provide approaches to assist college students achieve that information.
Our system of public education is way from good and in want of fixed enhancements, however he does an incredible disservice to devoted educators in any respect ranges by falsely laying the blame solely at their toes.
Cyndy Crist, St. Paul