Is it time to talk about guns yet, or is it too soon?
Words really do not express what I am feeling right now. The term “anger” just isn’t cutting it, nor is “sorrow”. There is something boiling deep in my core, something waiting to erupt. I am angry at a culture which refuses to have any sensible debate over guns. I am sorrowful over another twenty-seven who needlessly lost their lives. Admittedly, for a second I thought, is it too soon to talk about guns and gun control and gun violence and gun culture? But that thought soon dissipated.
Every time there is a major tragedy of this sort, it seems to be mass media’s protocol to wipe any discussions over guns under the table. Twenty-seven people have become yet another statistic today. Twenty-seven people, a group which included children. They had names, families, friends, pasts, and futures. They were all reduced down to a fucking statistic because of another homicidal nutjob. Twenty-seven people I did not know, personally, but cannot help but feel sorrow for, nevertheless. Is it too soon to talk about guns, or too fucking late? From where I am sitting, the answer is abundantly clear.
There is something literally rotten at the core of the United States. Alienation is high. Depression is rampant (the CDC states that 1 in 10 Americans suffer from depression, and those figures are only reported statistics). And somehow we let these mentally-ill people access to guns. We seem more concerned about discriminating people over abortion and gay rights issues, while people are needlessly gunned down in senseless acts of mass murder. But for some reason we don’t want to discuss that. Is it too sensitive a topic, or is it because that “right” is protected under the Second Amendment?
How about the idea that people have the right to live a free and prosperous life? It seems that every fucking week I have to wake up and hear another odious story about another mindless shooting: at a shopping mall in Oregon, a murder-suicide by an NFL linebacker, six at a Sikh Temple, twelve at movie theater. And every time it happens, the people move on, not having a learned anything, bolstered in part by those in the media who would rather ignore these events. We state the flimsiest reasons for the snapping of the individual and the media moves on to focus on something else.
I am not saying anything for or against the ban of guns. I am not saying anything for or against the Second Amendment. I am not saying that it is only guns that are at issue here. That’s precisely the point. What are the underlying, root causes? What makes somebody take a gun and resort to murdering men, women, and children, so senselessly? Mental illness? Gun culture? Effects of the media? The prevalence of such weapons? Could it be as simpleminded as fame? Economic disparity? Racism? Discrimination? Religious beliefs? Alienation? What is going on? Nobody knows. Because nobody bothers to talk about anything. We just chalk it up to another “crazy lunatic” and move on.
There is something literally rotten at the core of the United States. Something so rotten that nobody wants to point out the stench. There is an elephant in the room somewhere. We just don’t know where the fuck it is, what it’s doing there, or how it got there. Schools are sacred places, the only true places that should be considered “holy ground”. We go there to learn, socialize, and educate ourselves. I am so sorry to all the victims and the victims’ families and friends. I am so sorry to anyone who has ever had to personally go through such an ordeal. I am so sorry to everybody. We’re all weeping for you, because there isn’t anybody who hasn’t been touched by this, or anything like this.
(That’s all I want to say. For now. I’m feeling really depressed over all this. Might follow-up later.)