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President Barack Obama's speech tonight in Newtown was superb. I won't attempt to quote any of it; it was eighteen minutes long, and every American should watch it, in its entirety (now embedded below). It was compassionate, moving, and hit the exactly right tone.

And our President made it crystal clear: the gun carnage in this nation is simply not acceptable, and as a civilized society, we must not allow it to continue. That we are better than this. That he intends to start discussions in coming days with a widely representative group, including mental health professionals, law enforcement officials and others, to put our best minds at work for finding solutions.

It was the speech of a true leader. Our leader.

I had Fox News tuned in at the end. The first person interviewed was the egregious Charles Krauthammer. This was his chance to show, for once in his life, some hint of inner humanity. His opening comment (and I'm doing this from memory):

"Make no mistake, this was a profoundly political speech."

True to form. As a physician, it profoundly embarrasses me that this heartless, compassionless asshole, who shows not a trace of empathy, was trained as a psychiatrist. And now, he's reduced himself to nothing more than a Rupert Murdoch shill.

Mr. Krauthammer, you should be utterly ashamed to show your face before anyone with a beating heart.

7:02 PM PT: The original link to the video (which I got from the whitehouse.gov website) was actually to Friday's announcement by the President -- h/t to cany for letting me know. I've now fixed the link. The video has also been embedded in the front page story by Laura Clawson, and FiredUpInCa's rec list live diary, and I've now also embedded it here, above.

10:24 PM PT: After this diary appeared on the Rec List (thanks again!), I added an update to highlight the incredibly important mental health dimension in all of this -- the fact that our mental health system in this country has deteriorated in recent years to an atrociously inadequate state. There is an article on Gawker that appeared just today that has garnered a lot of attention called "I Am Adam Lanza's Mother" that describes the desperate plight of the author in the care of her mentally ill adolescent son. Regretfully, I linked to that article here without having done my homework in checking further. Many thanks to 'marigold' in the comments below for linking to another article that raised some significant alarm bells about this piece. I thought it best to delete my link in the diary (although it's still in the comments), and I eliminated the update to the title. That is not to diminish in any way the concern about the woeful state of our mental health care that this piece attempts to dramatize.


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