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January 8, 2013
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Time to examine underlying motives behind gun violence

Regarding gun control: Safety locks and backgrounds checks would help, but ignore the underlying motives for indiscriminate assaults. We don’t need proof to believe that low self-esteem is involved — blaming poverty and poor parenting is common, but Klebold and Harris (Columbine) were raised in middle class homes by non-abusive parents.

What about schools, where assaults have occurred? Schools, by nature, are competitive, grading kids on academic performance rather than simply supporting non-judgmental creativity and introspection, where grading and testing actually discourage deeper learning. The premise and myth is that competition will motivate kids to do their best, but competition doesn’t bring out only the best, it brings out both the best and the worst – cheating, bullying, and feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness when grades aren’t good enough.

Do I expect grading to be eliminated? No. Do I expect mere gun control laws to control the Adam Lanzas (Connecticut) of this world? No. But the use of grading and standardized testing meant to assure that no child is left behind are two reasons why some kids actually are.

Robert Lobell

Nevada City

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The Union Updated Jun 6, 2013 11:41PM Published Jan 9, 2013 07:18AM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.