Re: "Gun control won't prevent tragedy," by Michael Reagan, column, Dec. 22
A good op-ed page should present a spectrum of political thought. I neither expect nor want to agree with every opinion expressed there.
I do, however, prefer that published opinions at least be reasonably coherent. By my lights, Micheal Reagan's piece on December 21 fell well short of that modest standard. I certainly endorse his call for mental health care reforms. But he also champions the notion, advanced by the N.R.A., that there should be an armed guard at every school. I am not persuaded, but maybe the point is debatable. Indeed, later in the same column, Mr. Reagan rebuts his own argument, conceding that a cadre of trained Secret Service personnel were unable to stop a gunman from shooting his father. But that's not the crazy part of Mr. Reagan's opinion. This is: He rejects the idea of banning semi-automatic weapons or large magazines because he thinks such measures wouldn't altogether prevent mass shootings, they could at best, " ... keep the death toll in the single digits." Astounding. Instead of passing laws now that can save the lives of many children, he wants us to wait until we can magically protect all children by the Barney Fife-ization of our schools. In the meantime, what does Mr. Reagan offer to the grieving parents of the unfortunate double-digit victims of the next school shooting? Apologies? The gun violence problem in this country is complicated and progress will be difficult, but keeping the number of funerals in Newtown in the single digits would have been a decent place to start.