Politicizing a tragedy...Count us in

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You may have noticed the pattern...There's a massacre of innocents by some crazed gunman using military-style weapons and the gun lobby and its media and political minions dismiss suggestions for gun safety or control legislation as "untimely" and "disrespectful." (How predictable is this response? The Daily Show parodied the gun lobby's lament after the Aurora, CO massacre.)

Our hearts are with the families of Newtown. Many of us can put ourselves in the shoes of the teachers in that elementary school and imagine what we would have felt if a gunman had invaded the classrooms in which we used to teach and we had been responsible for the lives of our students. (And this is not to say that schools haven't come a long way recently to increase security, which is all to the good.)

We think it is a fine time to politicize the Newtown tragedy.  We urge everyone to light a candle or say a prayer, but also to write to their congressional representative and senators about the need for sensible restrictions on the purchase of weapons designed to kill lots of people very, very quickly.