Headlines from the New York Times for Tuesday, October 3, 2017
Preventing Mass Shootings Like the Vegas Strip Attack
After the horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas, the impulse of politicians will be to lower flags, offer moments of silence, and lead a national mourning. Yet what we need most of all isn’t mourning, but action to lower the toll of guns in America.
We don’t need to simply acquiesce to this kind of slaughter. When Australia suffered a mass shooting in 1996, the country united behind tougher laws on firearms. As a result, the gun homicide rate was almost halved, and the gun suicide rate dropped by half, according to the Journal of Public Health Policy.
Skeptics will say that there are no magic wands and that laws can’t make the carnage go away. To some extent, they’re right. Some criminals will always be able to obtain guns, especially in a country like America that is awash with 300 million firearms. We are always likely to have higher gun death rates than Europe.
But the scale is staggering. Since 1970, more Americans have died from guns (including suicides, murders and accidents) than the sum total of all the Americans who died in all the wars in American history, back to the American Revolution. Every day, some 92 Americans die from guns, and American kids are 14 times as likely to die from guns as children in other developed countries, according to David Hemenway of Harvard.
Readings from the Prophet Hosea for Tuesday, October 3, 2017
God has made it plain to me that if my confidence is in government, then I am making earthly leaders a substitute for him. Notice how God speaks through Hosea and tells the people that he cannot support their reliance on government.
Hosea 13.10-11 – Where now is your king, that he may save you? Where in all your cities are your rulers, of whom you said, “Give me a king and rulers”? I gave you a king in my anger, and I took him away in my wrath.
Prayers for Tuesday, October 3, 2017
Dear God, we need to know the correct balance between loyalty to government and faith in you. Please grant us proper perspective.