Anger, fear, frustration, disbelief
These are the words we all have heard in the last few days regarding the killing of 17 people in Florida. Of course, the words were followed by the question; what can the government do to stop these mass killings? On the left the answer is money to all states to identify and treat mental illness and to ban all guns or as much as they can get through the congress. On the conservative side a similar cry to identify and treat mental illness with much less emphasis on gun control. Of course, the news pundits are screaming for answers but neither they nor the politicians have real answers to the obvious question, what can we do?
It is our opinion that the pattern of mass killing needs to be treated as we do with the CDC and diseases, careful study and logical treatments. In the case of the CDC they try to isolate the carriers of a specific disease and then study a controlled group to arrive at some logical steps to stem the tide of an epidemic.
We think the same action should be taken by the federal government, establish a control population, recruit the best of our doctors, sociologist, law enforcement to study the group, prioritize the problems ranking them in order of contribution to the atmosphere that leads to mass killings. The possible contributions are health conditions, access to guns, drugs, gangs, lack of family unity, education and other causes not yet identified.
We think we can recommend the perfect location to run this program of research and recommendations, the south side of Chicago Illinois. This location has the highest rate of murders on a daily basis [based on news reports] and is concentrated in one area so the research program can be controlled and the recommendations for dramatically reducing the mass killings can be developed. This program should be funded by the federal government assuming the administration can do this without asking the congress to supply the funds. It is clear that politics is governing the congress and that factions of each “side” will never agree to their opponent’s plans. A possible positive side effect of this research program will be to develop actions that will reduce the killings in the south side of Chicago as well as recommend ideas that can be applied all over the country. The political leaders in Chicago will need to allow the federal government to pay for and conduct what we think will be a three-year study and series of actions to stop the killing. Certainly, politician’s do not have the answer to this problem that as we said at the outset is causing anger, fear, disbelief and the question, what is the answer?
David Martin and Dianne Egan are principals of the Burleson Star.