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Article updated: 1/15/2013 6:28 PM

Focus on mental health, not guns

It is ironic that one of the headlines Jan. 10 stressed that "VP Biden vows urgent action" in the wake of the terrible shootings in Newtown, Conn., while on Page 5 of the same paper, there was an article about a man in Bartlett who was accused of stockpiling machine guns without a Firearm Owners ID.

It further states that police found "several large containers of bomb-making chemicals." We are asked to trust the current administration to provide answers and new safeguards against further atrocities while they couldn't even account for weapons under their control during the fiasco called Fast and Furious.

The Obama/Biden approach seems to be concentrated on outlawing assault rifles and high-capacity magazines while creating a national database of gun owners. These may be laudable initiatives but fail to address the larger problem of why people, some appearing perfectly normal, feel compelled to kill innocent civilians including children. This is a disaster waiting to happen.

Why wasn't the Bartlett man given a psychiatric evaluation? Why was he stockpiling weapons and bomb-making chemicals? With credit for good time served he can be released in four months.

The focus is on eliminating guns and not on the root cause, which is obviously mental health. We need a better means of identifying troubled people and helping them before they go over the edge.

Raymond Allison


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