Texas Gov. Greg Abbott staged a press conference, expressing sorrow for the families those killed last month during a mass shooting at an elementary school.

He added that state mental health counseling would be made available to grieving families and law enforcement personnel for as long as they need it.

Abbott’s words are cheap and useless, as they will not bring the dead back to life. His eloquence falls on deaf ears as the victims’ families will be haunted for a lifetime.

Abbott, Sen. Ted Cruz and others then addressed the National Rifle Association’s annual convention in Houston. That seems to be the routine — express sorrow, place the flag at half-staff, observe a moment of silence, then seek out financial donors within the gun lobby.

For once, why can’t government officials be more proactive in addressing gun control and mental health issues? Has there not been enough tragedy to warrant some drastic action? Years ago, there were Columbine, Sandy Hook and Parkland, not to mention smaller incidents not covered by national news.

Other democracies like England, Canada and Australia all have crime rates much lower than the United States. Nowadays, we can’t go to church safely, we can’t shop at the grocery store safely, and we can’t send our children to school safely. Is this the America we all want to live in? Why must we continue to exist in a society riddled with hate, distrust, mental instability, racial tension and outright fear?

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