Washington shooting

People evacuate a building after a shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. Police identified a Navy contractor as the gunman, who was fatally shot after killing 12 people. (Alex Wong / Getty Images / September 16, 2013)

Re "13 dead in D.C. shooting," Sept. 17

For too long we have allowed the gun lobby to set our national gun policy. It has been a perilous experiment that has cost American lives, including 12 innocents at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday.

The gun lobby's only interest is to sell more guns, plain and simple, so it steadfastly opposes any and all attempts to implement the most common-sense regulations, such as requiring a background check for every firearm purchase. Too many spineless politicians kowtow to the lobby's demands.

Mass shootings committed with dangerous weapons easily obtained by dangerous people have become commonplace. It's time to establish a national gun policy that has saving American lives as its priority.

Loren Lieb

Northridge

The elephant in the room grows larger by the day and still goes unnoticed.

What a sad commentary it is on the state of our society when mental illness goes improperly untreated, as it apparently did for gunman Aaron Alexis. How many opportunities arose in his life when he could have been treated?

We live in a society that puts such a stigma on mental illness that we would rather let those afflicted go untreated with the possibility of harming others or themselves rather than have a system of true mental health care.

Russ Levine

Temecula

In the aftermath of yet another mass shooting, we will read the usual barrage of letters both for and against gun control, which is par for the course.

But 12 more individuals have been massacred and the gunman is dead, so each and every one of us must ask ourselves one question: Is having such easy access to guns worth the carnage? Any honest, thoughtful individual would assuredly say no.

Jack Wolf

Westwood

Sadly, my reaction to the latest massacre is one of cynicism grounded in logic, given our inability to achieve responsible gun control in our country. After reading about the tragic event in our nation's capital, my questions are these: What's new about this, and when can we expect the next slaughter?

Joan Horn

Carlsbad

Glad to see that Washington's ultra-restrictive gun laws work as well as other similar laws throughout the United States.

John W. Hazlet Jr.

Pasadena

ALSO:

Letters: More time for rail safety system

Letters: Struggling but not getting ahead

Letters: Obama deserves credit on Syria