Friday, December 21, 2012

Arne Duncan Calls for Tighter Gun Control In Wake of Newtown Shootings

This from Politics K-12:
In his first public appearance since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called on the nation to tighten gun control laws, improve access to mental health, and curb the glorification of violence in movies and video games.

"Are we doing enough to keep children safe from harm? I don't think so, and neither does President Obama," Duncan said in remarks at Neval Thomas Elementary School in Washington.
Declaring this a "collective responsibility," he specifically urged federal lawmakers to reduce the size of gun clips, reinstate a ban on assault weapons, and ensure existing laws are being enforced. His remarks came about an hour before the National Rifle Association scheduled its first press conference since the shooting.

Earlier this week, Duncan attended some of the memorial services for Sandy Hook victims. He will be a part of President Obama's newly created commission earlier this week, led by Vice President Joe Biden, which has been tasked with creating concrete proposals for gun control, mental health services, and school safety changes in the wake of Sandy Hook.

As a member of the anti-violence task force, Duncan said he'll spend the coming weeks talking to folks across the country, from educators to gun owners—all of whom, he said, share common values. "We value our children," he said...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

THis state closed down many mental health institutional facilities about 30 years ago and basically released these folks out into the general public with almost no support or followup. We don't have many resources now to diagnose, treat or monitor current mentally unstable individuals who would probably be identified as high risk.
Equally, just like a person without mental health instability, you can imprison or punish folks who you think might commit a crime or based on what they are thinking. I believe you will also find that many of the individuals who could clinically be identified as at risk for this type of behavior do not recognize their perceptions as abnormal. They rationalize their behavior and rarely self admit themselves for care.

Mental ilness has such a stigma in our culture that even some family members are less inclined to notify authorities or seek treatment of the mentally unstable relation. I have heard parents tell their childern who suffer from paranoia and delousion to "snap out of it" and "if you want to feel better, then just feel better." Can you imagine telling your child with leukimia or renal failure to just "snap out of it"? There is a complete disconnect with many in our society as to how to deal with these folks. Its not like they walk about in the mall with a sign around their neck or "look crazy".
We have reduced funding for these services and as a result we are now paying the price, no different than failing to maintain roads, build schools or ensure that we have corporate boxes at the new Rupp Arena.