It is time to act with sense, compassion and maturity and take down the Confederate flag from the Statehouse grounds. I implore the Legislature to understand the consequences of preserving a sign of hatred in the public domain.

It is also time to address gun control. How much death must happen before sense comes to that issue?

As I watch with sorrow, I am, however, proud of my city. Bigotry, hatred, prejudice exists everywhere, even here, but our community responded with universal condemnation of an act of hatred with love and embracing, not violence. How different from what we have seen elsewhere is our country.

Finally, when my seven-year-old granddaughter heard the news, her initial response was, “Oh, I feel so bad for their families.” So many good families with holes in their fabric that can never be mended — loss that is irreplaceable. Your community mourns with you. No matter what is said about political or social implications of this act, in the end it is a horrible loss for the families from which these people were torn. Maybe we can respond in a responsible way to change something if nothing else.

W. J. Grossman, M.D.

Rutledge Avenue