David Letterman took a moment from the “Late Show” Monday night to address the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. Letterman was thinking about the shooting all weekend and wanted to discuss the tragedy as well as the national debate on gun control.
After his opening monologue, Letterman sat down at his desk and said, “I think I'm like most people, especially, people here in the Northeast, thinking all weekend about the shooting up in Connecticut and you come out here and you see these beautiful Christmas lights. I don't know, I think they are more beautiful this year than they've ever been and it makes me so sad because they are really for kids.”
Letterman continued, “What part of that do you think about that's going to make any difference? Do you think about the kids in class? That's too awful to think about. Do you think about the parents and their friends and getting that message from the school and finding out that their lives are irrevocably broken, destroyed, ruined?”
Letterman has a 9-year-old son of his own. He married his current wife, Regina Lasko, in 2009 although the couple had been together since 1986. Harry Joseph Letterman was born in 2003.
Letterman said “You think about your own kid. I take him to school every now and then. Are we supposed to be worried about dropping our kids off at school now? I don't know. I never had to worry about it before. Here, I thought school was a good place where my son will be free of the idiot decisions made by his father.”
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He also touched upon the national debate of gun control and mental health. Letterman said, “I'm not dumb enough to think that this is a problem of guns. Before there were guns, people were killing one another and so you can't just say it's guns. You can't just it's mental health or emotional problems because people with all manner of problems don't necessarily kill each other.”
To prepare for the segment, Letterman had his staff conduct research on guns in America. Letterman said the only gun legislation he knew of was the James Brady Bill, which allowed background checks and a waiting period for individuals who wanted to buy a gun. Brady was paralyzed in the 1981 assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan.
“You hear that it's a semi-automatic and it had a clip that contained 30 rounds of ammunition," Letterman said. "I don't know why you need that. You can have guns, 50 percent of the households in this country have guns. So, we're never going to say 'you can't have guns.'”
Letterman noted that there have been 70 school shootings since the Brady Bill was passed, not including other mass shootings. “Good lord, really? Should there be that many? I would have thought, hopefully, one a year would be too many.”
Letterman also commended President Barack Obama and his speech at Sandy Hook Elementary School and ends the segment with “It's a sad, sad holiday season.” A fan-made video of the segment can be viewed below.