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Other ‘influences’ possible cause of gun violence

Your latest issue contained an article on gun violence and another one “suggesting” that it was about time that laws regarding possession of these weapons should change. It alleged that as more people obtained guns, violence increased so changes were needed.

However, one might look at the other changes that have occurred over the last half century. Perhaps some of these show even greater connections between the chain of events.

When I was in the public school system back in the 1940s, it was required by state law that every morning school opened with a reading of a psalm, the recitation of the Lord’s Prayer and a pledge of allegiance to the flag. Almost every male in the school possessed a .22-caliber rifle or shotgun for hunting. School shootings were unheard of. These opening exercises have since been made illegal.

In 1985, I began teaching at New Albany High School. On my first day, I was shocked to see two teenagers get off an arriving school bus carrying .22-caliber rifles. I quickly learned they were bringing them to school to take part in shooting at a range in the school’s basement. Within the year, OSHA forced the school to close the range. The air purification system was deemed too contaminated with “lead fumes” to be healthy. Students no longer were trained in the proper education of gun handling.

Now, Bibles are banned from most school in most states. The Ten Commandments are removed from … school buildings. After three generations have been through our school systems with no exposure to these influences, don’t you think it might affect changes in our behavior and our culture?

Samuel H. Christie | Palmyra, Ind.

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