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Letter: Massacres are sadly part of the nation’s fabric

Mourners hold a vigil to pay tribute to

Mourners hold a vigil to pay tribute to victims of a shooting in Thousand Oaks, California, on Nov. 8. Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images / APU GOMES

Another mass shooting in America [“Gunman kills 12 at California bar,” News, Nov. 9].

I would like to say, “We are better than this,” but that would be inaccurate. “This is precisely who we are” is a greater truth.

We can’t point fingers of fear at immigrants or foreign terrorists.

“We are our own worst enemy,” the adage says. Homegrown terrorists are accountable for far more deaths than any of these groups.

It’s mental illness, not guns, the right says. Curtail gun sales, the left says. Neither statement is correct, nor overtly false; neither serves up a real solution.

Mental illness is prevalent worldwide, yet for the most part, ongoing mass shootings are uniquely American. Our nation has a long history of violence as a means for solutions. Combine this with a passionate love of guns, and based on shootings and deaths, these define who we are. The passions and priorities need to be confronted.

It’s not people outside the border who present our gravest danger, it’s those within. Mass killings will remain a part of the American consciousness and reality as long as our actions as a nation do not evolve.

Steven Taub, Melville

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