LETTERS, April 12: The wrong focus on gun violence

What is driving violence?

EDITOR: In a month, four people have been shot to death in Wilmington. Two alleged shooters and one victim were 17. At least three bills in the General Assembly would either erode or do away with our current handgun permitting system and concealed carry standards. A fourth bill would allow conceal carry on state college campuses. Gun violence and gun safety are serious issues that affect all of us whether we own guns or not.

The Celia Rivenbark column “Guns in a Bookstore, Really” and the responses to it certainly reflect genuine feelings on both sides of the “gun issue.” Unfortunately, they are perspectives that never find common ground. Rather, they reflect the endless back and forth about guns that misses the real issue -- the nature of violence in our society and the fear it engenders.

Until we are willing to listen to the “other guys” point of view and start a genuine dialogue about our differences, how can we begin to understand why resorting to violence seems all too often to be the default solution to conflict, and a gun, when available, the preferred means to resolve that conflict?

We desperately need to take the discussion to a new level. More guns or less guns is a response, but not a solution to violence in our society.

Donald Arabian, Wilmington

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