What is the underlying cause of mass killings?
Exactly why the pathetic creatures who murdered 31 people in Dayton and El Paso committed their horrific deeds may never be known.
But as always, the reaction has been calls that the government do more to prevent mass killings. Stricter gun control laws already have been suggested by some.
We doubt they would do much good. Homicidal maniacs will always find some way to kill. Doing more to find out what triggers their murderous impulses is imperative. Then, the debate over how to stop them can begin.
Among the very few things we know about mass murderers is that we know very little about them. What are the similarities between those who claim to be killing for racial reasons and those who admit they just do it for “thrills?” What, if anything, about their behavior should tip us off they are time bombs that have already started ticking?
What are we ignoring in those who then pick up guns (or bomb-making materials, or get into their own cars …) and carry out the evil in their hearts?
And if we do learn the answers to those questions, what can we do about them without infringing upon the civil liberties all Americans enjoy?
It is far easier to blame an inanimate object than to undertake the difficult, soul-searching work needed.
Until we as a nation make that commitment, however, the killings will continue.