In reference to "Mass Shootings" (Letter to the Editor, 10/8/15).
Closing down the internet and instituting more gun controls are not the answers to the killings in schools universities and other public places. The internet is here to stay and more good comes from it than evil.
Parents need to be more responsible in monitoring their children on the internet and steering them away from violent videos and games. Monitoring is especially needed with troubled teenagers. Additionally, guns and other weapons need to be locked up and secured from children and the mentally incapacitated.
From what I have read, most, if not all, of the school killings have been performed by troubled young men. Our society has been lax on recognizing the symptoms of mental illness and when suspicions of disturbance are brought to the awareness of parents and teachers, because our society is so politically correct in regards to protecting an individual's rights, treatment is not given. Also, from what I have heard, the number of mental hospitals has diminished and health insurance will pay only a limited amount for mental patient care.
I have had a year of psychology, and don't pretend to be an expert, but from what I have learned, sociopaths who kill and do crime against society have no conscience. They have no regard for human life so if this mental illness is evident, this person should be removed from society.
As far as gun control goes, in Chicago where some of the strictest gun controls are in place, there are more killings than in cities where less controls are in place. More people are killed by knives and other weapons than guns. Sure we need background checks, which California has, and controls on the sale of assault weapons, but the right for individuals to carry guns should not be removed from us. In Israel, teachers are allowed to carry guns and there has never been a killing in the schools.
Instead of instituting more gun controls, the solution can be done more simply. My husband and I have done a lot of cruising. Upon boarding the ship, all passengers are given an ID photo card key. We carry this key with us at all times, so that when we leave the ship for a shore excursion, upon returing to the ship our card is scanned into the computer to identify us as legitimate travelers. Additionally, we have to place our items purchased, purses, backpacks, etc. on the rack to be scanned as is done in the airports.
Universities, colleges and schools should have in place scanners and ID cards if possible. With scanners alone, guns and weapons would be detected. This would cost money of course, but when taking in consideration all the lives that have been lost and could be lost in the future, the place of scanners and/or ID cards would be well worth the extra cost.
The criminal will always get a weapon if he or she wants one. With the availability of guns on the internet, robbery or on the black market, weapons will be obtained. As is done in airports, courthouses, and cruise ships, scanners and/or ID cards need to be in place. If this is not feasible, at the least have someone checking bags, backpacks and clothing before entry is given.