Analysis & Comment

Opinion | After the Nashville Shooting: What We Can Do About Gun Violence

More from our inbox:

To the Editor:

Re “Heavily Armed Assailant Kills 6 at School in Nashville” (front page, March 28):

Monday’s murder of three children and three teachers in Nashville will no more likely produce effective gun regulation than any other school mass murder in America. Instead what’s needed is immediate, direct citizens’ action.

Every single teacher and college professor should be called upon to go on a one-day, nationwide strike protesting government inaction in passing and enforcing common sense gun regulation. Then at the next mass school murder, go on a two-day nationwide strike. Then at the next shooting a three-day nationwide strike. And so on. Such strikes should keep escalating until the government is compelled to pass meaningful legislation, and enforce it.

Will the strikes cause much inconvenience to tens of millions of parents? Sadly, of course they will. But I believe that ultimately the vast majority of parents will side with teachers against the real villains in this national crisis: pathetically cowed, corrupt (beholden to gun special interests) government officials lacking the backbone to genuinely protect our children’s and teachers’ safety.

Michael Northmore
Staten Island

To the Editor:

My neck hurts a lot this morning. It started hurting as I read the morning paper and saw the story about those children and adults killed in Nashville. It is hurting because I am trying to get my head buried so deep in the sand that I can smile when my children come home from school. So that I won’t make them afraid to go out in the world. I cannot keep them in a box, much as I would like to. I am afraid that I cannot keep them safe.

I am a mother. Seeing the faces of those crying, frantic children in that school, knowing there is no way for me, an individual, to do anything to stop these senseless killings leaves me with no choice but to stick my head in the sand. What else can I do?

The protests, the letters, the calls to members of Congress, the appearances before Congress by bereaved parents, grandparents, siblings and neighbors, have done nothing to stop this madness. Every time, the lobbyists, the gun rights people, the gun manufacturers who want to keep the cash coffers full, block any real action.

Why are we, as a society, so determined to destroy ourselves with unfettered access to guns?

Charlotte Saliou
Centerport, N.Y.

To the Editor:

Monday’s shooting in Nashville, which took the lives of three 9-year-olds and three adults, has affected me more than the massacres at Sandy Hook, Parkland or Uvalde. I’m guessing that’s because I didn’t have grandchildren when those tragedies occurred, but I do now.

Despite the fact that my granddaughter is only 8 months old and her little cousin was born less than two weeks ago, I know it won’t be long before they both are enrolled in elementary school. I never worried about gun shots ringing out when their parents were in fourth grade, but I do worry for my grandkids’ safety today.

To be sure, talking about gun control can be complicated, especially when the Second Amendment is included in the discussion. Still, I wonder how many more children have to die before lawmakers wake up and smell the gunpowder?

I urge the president to convene a summit at Camp David with representatives from the National Rifle Association, school officials and grieving parents. It won’t be easy, but I am confident they eventually will be able to find some common ground. At least that’s my hope.

Denny Freidenrich
Laguna Beach, Calif.

To the Editor:

What did we learn from Monday’s tragic school shooting that killed six innocent people in Nashville? Choose one.

1. We learned that we’ve failed to learn from every other previous mass shooting — shootings that should have spurred us into action to save the children and adults who needlessly died in Nashville … but didn’t.

2. We learned that we are grateful they weren’t our children. Yet.

3. Nothing.

What a shameful, tragic, impotent people Americans have become.

John R. Scannell
Sammamish, Wash.

G.O.P. Stokes Antisemitism

To the Editor:

Re “Hate Crimes Against Jews Hit a High Last Year” (news article, March 23):

An open letter to Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump:

The G.O.P. continues to stoke the flames of antisemitism in our country at a level never before seen. For example, last week a tweet was sent by the Michigan Republican Party comparing gun-control measures to the Holocaust, thereby trivializing that horrific genocidal crime.

And both G.O.P. presidential front-runners, Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump, recently used a ubiquitous antisemitic trope to disparage Alvin Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, describing him as “Soros-backed” or “Soros-funded,” referring to George Soros, the liberal Jewish philanthropist.

Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump, as Orthodox Jews and as devoted Americans, won’t you please speak out, publicly and resolutely, to condemn these and other disgraceful attempts by so many prominent Republicans to stoke the flames of antisemitism?

Robert Cheikes
Jerry Nathanson

Let’s Get Rid of Medicare ‘DisAdvantage’ Plans

To the Editor:

Re “Biden’s Plan to Cut Billions in Medicare Fraud Ignites a Lobbying Frenzy” (news article, March 23):

As a physician for 50 years, now retired, I applaud this article. It shines a bright light on the abuses by Medicare Advantage plans.

These plans, profit-making corporate entities, are focusing on their bottom line. The way to increase profits for a health insurance company is to collect premiums while delivering as little care as possible. These reverse incentives do not occur with original public Medicare.

When I was in private practice I saw how these Medicare “DisAdvantage” plans attracted patients with deceptive advertising but ended up hurting them, delaying or denying care by requiring prior authorization for expensive drugs or procedures.

We should get rid of Medicare Advantage plans. They add cost but no value to the system of health care for seniors. Unfortunately, lobbying money talks, and these very profitable corporate entities have deep pockets, which permit these abuses to continue. This is shameful.

In New York State, passing the New York Health Act would eliminate this expensive middleman and bring affordable health care to all New Yorkers.

Elizabeth R. Rosenthal
Larchmont, N.Y.

Netanyahu Thinks Big

To the Editor:

Re “A Leader’s Balancing Act Proves Shaky” (front page, March 28):

You have to hand it to Benjamin Netanyahu for thinking big. Most people, when charged with corruption, would hire the best lawyers available to argue their case in a court of law. Mr. Netanyahu’s response is to change the law and he would like to weaken the court.

H.D.S. Greenway
Needham, Mass.
The writer has worked as a journalist at several major newspapers and magazines.

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