In the wake of another unnecessary death of a black man at the hands of a white cop, and the equally gutless killings carried out by snipers at a peaceful demonstration, it's time to take a step back and look at some facts. Emotions are certainly running high on all sides of this issue, as one would expect. However, by their very nature, emotional responses invariably focus on symptoms, rather than on the root causes that create the longer-term issues. If we fail to look at the underlying facts, all we'll get are knee-jerk political responses that never address the real problem. This is the very nature of political activities; if voters were to examine the root causes we would find politics and politicians as the source of virtually all societal ills, including this especially inflammatory one.