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DISCUSS: Newtown Tragedy Brings Guns, Mental Health Issues to Forefront

'We have to change,' President Barack Obama tells a grieving community and nation. But what does that mean to you?

In the hours that followed the unthinkable tragedy in where 20 small children and 6 adults died in a shooting spree at Sandy Hook Elementary School, a devastated nation began bringing up issues of gun control and treatment for the mentally ill among friends or publicly on social media.

For many, the timing for such a discussion was too soon, but as details emerged over the weekend about the mass murder, and the identities of the slain became known to the world, the chorus only grew louder for change. It was a message President Barack Obama emphasized on Sunday night, speaking at a memorial in Newtown.

"These tragedies must end, and to end them, we must change. We will be told that the causes of such violence are complex, and it is true. No single law, no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society. But that can't be an excuse for inaction. Surely we can do better than this," he said.

But what exactly does that mean to you? Where do you stand on gun control or our nation's mental health care? Let us know in the comments below.

Across the Long Island Sound, families are still mourning their lost children, so we ask that you keep the conversation civil as a measure of respect to them. Mean or insensitive comments will be deleted.

Related: Springs Will Give Parents 'Talking Points' Regarding School Shooting Monday

Eastend50 December 18, 2012 at 09:24 PM
As I said above, had the mother been a responsible gun owner, and I believe 99 percent of gun owners are, the weapons would have been moved to a secure location outside the home as the son's mental condition deteriorated. Now the question is, had he not had access to these weapons, could this madman have simply gone to a nearby gun store, picked out a firearm, waited the mandatory 3 days, and walk out with a firearm? Was there some type of audit trail kept by the mental health agencies that would have put up a red flag? I bet not. And that is where one of the problems lie. I have never heard of anything worse in this country than 20 first grade children being shot to death in their classroom.
Preliator December 19, 2012 at 02:02 PM
Every year 50,000 Newtown massacres happen...it is called legal abortion. When the left deals with that you can get back to me on gun control.
John Gruber December 20, 2012 at 12:33 AM
yea because Ted Bundy and John Wayne Gacy played soooo many video games. Timmothy McVeigh too...
Debra Brodie Foster December 20, 2012 at 03:33 PM
There seems to be a lot of anger, mistrust, and aggression in most of these comments. No effort to discuss rational measures to reduce violence within our country.
MARTIN DREW December 21, 2012 at 03:01 AM
Debra Brodie Foster - anger & mistrust are kin to your time as a government leader who NEVER made efforts to discuss rational measures to help kids ... now you want to help & be a promoter of change because kids got killed . You killed our kids dreams of inclusion in their community . You failed our kids ... And you wonder why youth goes violent when forgotten or cast aside in society ..as collateral damage to selfish agendas.. You continue to amaze me in your need to act like a leader. Reducing violence takes leadership which has been proven you lack in your time in government. Reducing violence is not your expertise .. Give us a break. You were a gym teacher who put kids and THIER mental health ( being included in local society ) as a nuisance to your party politics since you left Springs School. Our kids expected more of you in government and so did I. Leave this topic to others who are sincere about kids mental well being. It's starts with the group hug you never were willing to give when you had the chance as our political leader .. Now you act concerned .. For political agendas ... You never miss a opportunity to use a crisis to your political benefit and agenda of party . Martin Drew

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