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Instinctive reactions to mass shootings: Destructive and disappointing

Meredith Cooper, right, and her daughter Heather, 8, visit a line of crosses before a vigil for the victims of the First Baptist Church shooting, Monday, Nov. 6, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Whenever we experience a hideous slaughter like the recent assault at a Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, the left indulges an annoying and irrational instinct: calling urgently and self-righteously for minor tweaks in gun laws that would have done nothing to actually avert the horror.

Meanwhile, the right displays its own quirks: refusing to discuss any alterations in firearms regulation — as if our current rules were perfect and immutable. We’d do much better if our national leaders — in both legislative and executive branches — brought together all sides to discuss reforming the bureaucracy and better enforcement of current laws to make it harder for the mentally ill or criminally violent to get deadly weapons.

Even those of us who staunchly back the Second Amendment should acknowledge that the deranged shooter in Texas should never have acquired his fearsome arsenal, and government should have done a better job in restricting his access to guns.

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