One of the nice things about gun violence—which is, let’s face it, a very short list—it brings people together. Albeit to discuss gun violence. Where it comes from. How to stop it. A most laudable goal by any standard except, OK I’ll say it, financial. Somehow these confabs always seem to lead to another dip into the taxpayer’s pocket, to little or no effect. But hey, if gun crime initiatives save the life of ONE CHILD, they’re worth it. At the risk of seeming callous, is there any way I could get a snapshot of the saved kid to put on the ‘frig? Meanwhile, we should all applaud the efforts of the Stand Against Gun Violence forum because A) It’s not easy to stay on your feet for hours at a time and B) they figured out how to stop the killing. Well almost. Here are their ideas in bullet point form via stamfordadvocate.com . . .
– Judy Meikle, a member of the Alternatives to Violence Project: “Community leaders need to create better programs for young gang members and those at risk of joining them to teach more pacifistic ways to solve their problems.”
– Jack Bryant, president of the Stamford chapter of the NAACP: “A continuing problem is getting teenagers to trust police enough to have a discussion about the penalties of carrying guns . . . We need to be proactive and not wait for another shooting to get together. We need to go to the places we have to go which are the neighborhoods where the problems are.’
– Norwalk Assistant Police Chief Thomas Kulhawik: “Many of those we arrest are bonded out before we even complete our paperwork. A lot of the crimes are committed by the same people, convicted felons who are out there again, again, and again.”
– Rabbi Ron Fish, of Congregation Beth-El in Norwalk: “Residents of towns with less crime such as Westport, Wilton, and Weston need to become more concerned about the problem of gun violence and help advocate for legislation that would address the problem.”
– State Rep. Bruce Morris: “[Kids from] poorer neighborhoods, youth who commit gun violence often come from families in which there is minimal emphasis on education and achievement. They don’t have meaningful and affirming relationships with adults. A good 70 percent of them are undereducated or uneducated.”
I’m thinking The Constitution State should start with the Chief’s solution—no revolving door justice—and see what happens. If that doesn’t work, they should up the sentences for crimes involving firearms. Failing that, or at the same time, they can get rid of the teacher’s unions, pay educators on a merit basis. We can circle back here after that.
Just my two cents.