In Connecticut, not far from the national horror that occurred in Newtown, we view the issue of gun control through a different lens. Perhaps because we feel closer to a monumental tragedy that has provoked such agonizing soul-searching about the place of guns in our society, perhaps because as educators we are tormented by the thought of so many young victims in what should have been a safe place of learning.
The moral outrage of Newtown should move all of us to action -- educators, parents, students and citizens -- because, ultimately, we can't rely on our political leaders to solve a problem that is endemic in our society. Violence permeates our culture. Violence infects our entertainment like a spiritual and psychological disease. Violence afflicts our relationships. And ending violence is a cause to which we all must be committed. Something must be done, and it must be done now by each of us.
As a nation, we are engaged in a vicious and protracted debate about gun control, in much the same way we had to endure the contentious debate about healthcare reform. Sadly, there will be much talk and little action.