I have not done much since Friday and its terrible news. Sometimes things that happen seem sadder and deeper than humanity should have to bear. I never watch television and get most of my news from internet news sites and every time I open a page and see those sweet little faces I just want to cry. Like everyone else I want to know how could this happen? But it is happening every day.
Naturally, this tragedy has spawned hundreds of insipid graphics with pithy, facile slogans that are littering Facebook and being spread far and wide. These mindless images blame the massacre at Sandy Hook on the absence of school prayer. They ignore the massacres that have taken place in churches, not to mention the molestation. They also proclaim that guns are not the problem. This makes me want to scream.
I grew up in hunting country in Pennsylvania. All the men I knew hunted as did many of the women. I grew up in a house full of guns and we often entertained ourselves by shooting targets mounted over the coal bin in my Dad's shop. I've helped with processing deer that my Dad and brothers killed and I've shoot hand guns and rifles. I do not have a problem in the world with hunting rifles. Assault weapons are another matter. High-capacity clips are another matter. Deer and bears and rabbits do no wear kevlar vests. High-capacity clips exist for one reason and one reason only, to shoot a lot of bullets in a short period of time. What civilian needs to do that?
In 1994 the Federal Assault Weapons Ban was instituted. It only affected the manufacturers, not private citizens. It expired in 2004 and was not renewed. We need to revisit this. I'm so tired of the lame, mindless excuses by people who say that banning assault weapons is “just the beginning” and “the government will take our guns away.” Where are their brains????
We are such a fear-driven society! During the last election I made a point of trying to get people to talk to me about why they “hated” Obama and I was continually astonished by the lack of knowledge they had about his record as President. They spewed ridiculous “opinions” that had no basis in fact. And they had absolutely no interest in learning the facts. They had their opinions and they were sticking to them regardless of how lacking in intelligence they were. Now I'm seeing the same thing about a mass murder. They say guns are not the problem, lack of prayer is the problem. Two weeks ago a woman was shot in the back while she was playing the organ in her church on a Sunday morning. But that was different – or so I am told when I point that out.
I am so sad. I am sad about the loss of those sweet little children and the women who tried to save them. But I am equally sad about the stupid, stupid, stupid slogans and pithy signs being passed around excusing the unjustifiable. We are a very stupid society. Not all of us but a lot of us.
When Barack Obama was reelected there was a ripple of absolute shock among people who believed such a thing could not happen. Even now many of them are saying, “How could this happen?” Now, many of those same people are saying, “Guns are not the problem.” It is true that all guns are not the problem but some kinds of guns are. It is my fervent hope that the people who are still reeling over the changed electorate that reelected our President will be equally stunned when the evolved electorate changes laws concerning access to assault weapons and high-capacity clips. We have to change. These beautiful children are not Second Amendment collateral damage. It is time for us to grow up. Some losses are too great to bear.
Thanks for reading.