SF, I agree with you that there a lot of social problems (and mental health problems) that contribute to these tragedies. I think the reason, though, that people jump to gun control is twofold:
- First, solving all the social problems is a huge undertaking--and while we definitely need to work (and work harder) on those problems, we aren't going to make progress quickly.
- Second, gun control is something we could do relatively quickly if we put our minds to it--and it's something that would likely have some success at least based on experience in other countries. Maybe it doesn't get all the way to the root of the problem--it doesn't eradicate mental illness or depravity in society--but it does at least reduce the number of deadly weapons available to the mentally ill and depraved. You'll still have the problem people, but if the problem people aren't armed for combat, they won't kill as many other people. That would be progress. And it's relatively easy to do, as long as the American people have the will to do it.