Anyone, with any level of humanity and feeling for those in acute distress, can only view what has happened in Connecticut with horror at the occurrence itself and with deepest sympathy for those affected ("Gunman kills 27 in early morning school massacre", The Herald, December 15).

The shootings reduced President Barack Obama to tears. When one considers the history in the United States of such acts of indiscriminate brutality ("Roll call of death", The Herald, December 15), it is difficult not to be inclined to the belief that there must be many in the US at this point, particularly those with a knowledge of the Bible (of whom there are many) who are reflecting upon Psalm 13 and the words "How long, O Lord".

How long indeed before the politicians cut through the never-ending debate concerning the Second Amendment to the United States constitution and make it more difficult to acquire and keep guns?

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That Amendment, as passed by Congress, reads: "A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

The precise meaning has long been disputed and pored over. What is obvious is that civilian militias no longer exist in the US. There have been over the years many court cases and impassioned arguments on this subject. However, it remains unchanged.

How much more pain and anguish will have to be endured in the US by parents, grandparents, relatives, and friends and how many more traumatic events have to be experienced by communities before political steps are taken to make appropriate changes to the Second Amendment?

Surely enough is enough and common sense will now prevail.

The intrinsic responsibility to protect the citizenry of the country should override any vainglorious right to own and carry arms with few effective controls. If reasons are needed to support that rationale, then unfortunately they are now available in sorrowful abundance.

Ian W Thomson,

38 Kirkintilloch Road, Lenzie.