02/20/13 — Video concern: The evidence is in. Now, it is time to talk ... really talk.

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Video concern: The evidence is in. Now, it is time to talk ... really talk.

There will continue to be talk about guns, violence and what the best way is to stop rampages like the one that took so many young lives in Newtown, Conn.

And there should be. We need as a nation to look at ways to make our children and ourselves safer.

Perhaps the best way to do that is through new regulations. Or, perhaps, education is the key, but no matter what, this is not a bad discussion to have -- and one we should welcome as responsible citizens of a free nation.

But what concerns some people -- and rightly so -- is that the discussion seems to be aimed directly at the nation's gun owners, with only a passing glance at the other potential contributors to a national boost in violence.

And one of the most surprising is the assertion by some -- and you know who -- that violent video games and the increasing amount of violence in movies and television have no discernible effect on youths and potential mass killers.


And this week, the investigation into Adam Lanza's murderous campaign in Newtown supports the theory that we have to look there, too.

Lanza had an extensive collection of violent video games and was active in their use.

Did they cause him to pull a trigger? No. He was crazy.

But if we are really going to address the issues surrounding violent attacks like this one, we have to look at all the potential contributors to the problem.

And we need to do it for real, not just to say in front of victims of gun violence that we are doing something.

Truth is there are hundreds of cases each year of vehicular homicide and drunken driving. Does that mean we outlaw cars because they might get into the hands of a texter or a drunken driver?

No. Not if we really want to solve the problem.

So let's talk about it all -- the prevalence of violence in America, crime and guns, legal gun ownership, loopholes that really are an issue, bad parenting, poverty and crime and mental health concerns.

Let's educate and illuminate rather than recruit Hollywood hypocrites to call for gun laws -- as they prepare for their next violent blockbuster.

Then we can propose a real solution -- something that will do more than make for a good soundbite for the evening news.

And when that real discussion happens, we can take the steps forward we need to take to keep our country truly safe.

But we have to be honest first.

Published in Editorials on February 20, 2013 10:39 AM