Local reverend: To feel safe after Sandy Hook, we need to have serious conversations

Posted at: 12/18/2012 3:29 PM
Updated at: 12/18/2012 6:56 PM
By: Amanda Ciavarri

The tragedy at Sandy Hook has many people feeling if an elementary school isn't safe, what is? – And how do we move forward?

President of the Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School Dr. Marvin McMickle sat down with News10NBC on Tuesday to address those issues. He says many feel that no place is safe and in order to get that feeling of safety back, we need to have some serious conversations.

The tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School has left an imprint on the county. This is not the first time we have experienced a mass shooting and Dr. McMickle says he sees a common theme. “Presence of not just a gun, not just a single shot pistol but an automatic and semiautomatic pistols and guns. We are now saying to ourselves no one is safe, not soldiers at Fort Hood, not shoppers in Oregon not Sikhs in a temple in Wisconsin and now not a six year old, or should we say 20 sic and seven year olds in Sandy Hook Elementary School.”

So how do we restore that lost sense of safety? McMickle says it begins with a conversation about the second amendment. “No one wants to over turn, it no one wants to abandon, it no one wants to repeal it. What I'm suggesting is that an amendment that was written in the 1780's when the weapon of choice was a single shot musket that takes a minute to reload, can not be equated with these automatic pistols and guns.”

It also should include a conversation about mental health. “Mental health care to the extent that we can discern that people are in need of we can find ways to deliver it, we can keep track of where our children are, doing reading and watching.”

McMickle says this is a turning point. While we remember Columbine, Virginia Tech, Aurora and the other tragedies, Sandy Hook will change the country's future. “If you took the gun out of each of those incidents, there is no story to tell.”
McMickle says he's not sure what will come from the conversations, only that they need to happen, in order to help Newtown and the rest of the nation heal and move forward.