Gunshots ring out. The wounded or dead are taken away.
The hand-wringing and cries for gun control, along with the cries of constitutional foul ring out.
And nothing changes.
Instead of continuing to do this dance, how about changing attitudes?
No, guns don't kill on their own. Nor do automobiles, pitchforks or airplane propellers. Yet, reasonable standards are applied to make sure the average person doesn't drive off with homicidal thoughts in their head, toss their pitchfork into their neighbor or walk into an airplane propeller.
None of that, however, means people don't die in automotive homicides, wounding by a neighbor or walking into an airplane propeller.
More rules are never the answer when dealing with people. Yes, there ought to be a law against some idiots driving past a Chicago playground and opening fire, wounding 13 including a 3-year-old boy. And, actually, there already is such a law on the books.
Indeed, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said earlier this month that his city's crime rate had been reduced, though murders were still too high - though murder also was down by 22 percent compared with the first eight months of 2012.
Chicago has spent money on gun buy-backs and has set up gun-free zones. It has targeted high-crime areas with extra police officers. Yet, a week ago, gunfire rang out from outside a playground.
The issue is not that there ought to be a law.
It's that there ought to be a society with accountability, where the first instinct whenever anything goes wrong is to kill.
There ought to be a society with achievable goals and a future that includes jobs that provide for families, so that young people don't end up sucked into a life of crime on the streets, with its attendant gunfire, because that's how they think money can be made.
A concentration on achieving those goals would change the nation into a place where crime once again is intolerable because people actually have possessions, decent homes, jobs and something to care for.
Instead, we waste efforts with the gun-control sideshow every six months.