No simple solutions

As the country grapples with ideas to stop incidents like December’s carnage at Sandy Hook Elementary School, one truth is becoming abundantly clear.

Everyone who has an ox that could possibly be gored is stepping up to make sure his particular ox is spared from any new regulations.

The latest ridiculous argument was made last week by actor Bruce Willis who opined that violent movies – like his “Die Hard” series – have no causal effect in incidents like Sandy Hook.

Well, perhaps as he says, no one ever walked out of one of his movies and opened fire on the general public as a direct result of viewing it. But gory movies and video games immerse their adherents in an atmosphere of violence to a point where they may become immune to reality.

Simply put, it is hard to imagine that wiping out folks on a computer screen for hour after hour or watching heroes like Bruce Willis mow them down in Cinemascope doesn’t cheapen one’s respect for life.

Gun control, changing the atmosphere of violence, and a stronger mental health system are all mentioned as possible antidotes to mass killings. We suspect that the answer is a combination of the three.

For while stronger background checks, limiting rounds in clips and banning assault weapons may partially address blocking the means for attacks like Sandy Hook, they do not begin to address the motives for such attacks.

Until those motives are explored – and eliminated – such attacks will continue. Anyone who thinks gun control alone will solve the problem has his head in the sand.

Unprovoked attacks on the general public are a complex problem. Complex problems require complex solutions.

* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.