I would like to offer comments on two of the opinion pieces in the September edition of the paper. 

Ted Olinger offers a well-reasoned opinion on the gun issue facing our country (“I Like Guns, But…”). One significant factor he didn’t mention was the thorny psychological aspect of the situation. Guns have become a vital part of many Americans’ sense of self. Given all the constructive opportunities that are available to build one’s identity, it’s perplexing that a person would choose something that has so much heart-breaking misery associated with it. 

That being said, there is no simple way to get people to disavow core beliefs no matter how counterproductive they may be. The one hope is that a devotion to guns is clearly not an innate human characteristic; there are many nations where that is not the case. Unfortunately, until devotees can be persuaded that more comprehensive gun ownership principles are not a threat to their identity, there will always be a hardcore vocal group making it politically difficult if not impossible to make progress on the issue.

Meredith Browand, in her piece (“Other People’s Children”), quotes the late writer and Nobel laureate Toni Morrison: “When a child walks in the room, your child or anyone else’s child, do your eyes light up? That’s what they’re looking for.” It’s a thought well worth remembering when our screens so often seem to hold greater allure for us than the presence of our young ones.

Richard Schwartz, Longbranch