The body count is rising while the videos are still streaming in from Las Vegas. We have a plate of terror for breakfast with our cup of coffee courtesy of a sniper who took aim at a large crowd of people at a music festival.

I can just Google my column and “mass shooting” to find the sad milestones along our nation’s road. Charleston, San Bernadino, and Newtown are all the more tragic because nothing was done to make it more difficult to buy assault weapons in the wake of these attacks.

We quickly ask about the shooter’s identity and wonder about his motivations but these should be less pressing questions than the really big one: how do we allow the sale of a weapon that allows someone to gun down more than 50 people in cold blood on the Las Vegas strip?

We can rail against domestic terrorism, foreign threats and mental illness but it’s pretty easy to do the math and see that a knife or a handgun can’t do the same kind of damage as an assault rifle. The odd NRA adage is that guns don’t kill people, people kill people -- but assault weapons allow people to kill an awful lot of people.

Sadly, I already know that it’s just a matter of time before I’ll find this column in the archives as I prepare to write yet another one. Please make it stop.


Bob Hardt