Mass Shootings Aren't Exactly Unimaginable Anymore

After yesterday morning's moment of silence for the Arizona shooting victims, a few thoughts began swirling in my head:

1) The youngest victim, Christina-Taylor Green, was only nine. I have a nine year old child and the pain of having him murdered would be unbearable. My heart goes out to Christina's parents. I don't know how they're doing media interviews because I'd be a complete wreck.

2) Most Americans will attempt to dissect Jared Lee Loughner's reasons for murdering innocent people--and try to distance themselves and their own personal beliefs--from those reasons. Some people will even vow to change the tone of their discourse...and then the next mass shooting will occur in some other city, and we'll start the, "How could this happen?" cycle all over again.

3) Too many parents across the United States lose their children to gun violence every single day. Every night the news is full of stories of adults being shot to death. We're immune to the shootings of everyday individuals. When it's one person without status or fame, we're like, eh, another murder. We only ask ourselves why and mourn when someone famous is shot, or when there's a mass murder.

We have numbed ourselves to these daily tragedies. Why is that?

When I got home last night I saw the opening clip of the Rachel Maddow Show and thought she was spot on with her analysis that everyone says these mass murders are "unimaginable" but in reality, they're not. They've become rather commonplace in our culture.

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The question of how to stop the next mass shooting is a big one that I'm sure everyone wants to answer. But we want it both ways. We want to still believe that guns don't kill people, people kill people, and yet we don't want to do the work as a society to truly invest in people and give them a sense of collective responsibility to humanity. Heck, we don't even adequately invest in our schools so kids regardless of economic background have the tools they need to take their rightful place in society.

I wonder, if mass shootings had taken place at the time the Constitution was written--you know, what if someone came and shot up the Constitutional Convention and took out six or seven members, would the Second Amendment exist in the form it does today?

There are guns in my house. I'm not comfortable with it. I don't like them. Their usefulness mostly comes up in conversations about what's going to go down in Los Angeles if and when a massive earthquake takes place.

The thinking is you need a gun to defend yourself from the people who will try to kill you when there's total anarchy and lawlessness after a disaster. The reality is that it's a bit like the arms race--other people probably have more guns and more ammo. We'd have to buy more guns just to keep up with them.

90 guns for every 100 Americans. There's no ending to it.


Anonymous said…
Hi Liz, great post!
How beautiful, poignant and powerful was your President Obama's, heart felt speech on the matter?
He truly is a potentially great President. Simply amazing. x
Liz Dwyer said…
The speech was wonderful. SO moving, truly. You think he can get his mojo moving again?
Anonymous said…
Yeah definitely, especially when he listens to the people, himself and his wife and not the masters! x Peace and love!

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