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Letter: Three reasons for Connecticut tragedy

Like many others, I’ve been deeply saddened and distracted by the tragic events in Connecticut a week ago. While our initial response is to say that there is no way to explain the actions of the gunman, it seems that there are actually three interconnected reasons. All three are being cited based on the bias of who is speaking, but violence on such a grand scale seems to require all three. First, there is mental illness, which has always been a human condition and isn’t going away. There are likely some modest improvements to be made in our approach to this ongoing challenge. The other two “reasons” are where real changes have the best hope for success: easy access to high-powered weaponry developed for the sole purpose of killing people, and widespread exposure to extreme violence in games and entertainment. Taking action to address only one or two of these reasons won’t be enough, in my opinion. We will need to tackle all three, thoughtfully, with purpose and compassion.

— Bill Griffith

Anchorage