Tragedy

Today, a man went into a school in Connecticut and shot a lot of people. I don’t know why; I can’t imagine what would motivate someone to do that sort of thing.  Don’t get me wrong, I get why people kill other people sometimes, but this…

Anyway, we may never know what caused this man to feel the need to kill the most innocent of our society.  Sadly, he too was found dead, so not only can we not punish him for this horrible crime, but we cannot find out that most basic answer to the question on so many peoples minds… why?

I ache for the families who’s children or parents were so cruelly snatched away from them today.  I cannot begin to imagine what that is like.  I’ve been blessed with beautiful children but I cannot imagine something like this happening to them.

All of that said, there is something that happens in the aftermath of an event like this.  Many people, after assessing blame, will attempt to find preventative measures.  I understand that.  In a world that’s so out of control, the need to feel like you are doing something to control it can be a powerful one.

The problem is that you can’t control the world.  You can’t control people.  We keep trying but the best and worst of us always find ways to buck that control.  We cannot be “broken” and why would we want to be.  The moment the human animal is contained, we truly are dead as a species.

My daughters school has a rule against them taking their backpacks with them to class.  I can only assume that post Columbine, this seemed like a good way to keep weapons out of classrooms.  Except the kids with the guns weren’t carrying them to class in backpacks.   The entered the school with them.  Some schools use metal detectors to attempt to block kids from bringing weapons to school and while that’s certainly more effective than the back pack ban, it too can be circumvented (no, I’m not going to tell you how).

The answer is not to ban guns.

I’m not a gun nut.  I don’t own any.  That doesn’t mean that I object to them, it simply means that when I have money to spend, the first thing that comes to mind is something that will bring me joy, or at the very least a moments distraction.  The distraction gained from a gun is fleeting at best.  I go to a range, I fire off a few rounds… I get little satisfaction from doing it.  On the flip side, I’ll use the Kindle I got every day, the iPod too.

Now, some of you will say that neither the Kindle or the iPod will defend my family and yes, I cannot argue that in certain situations, if someone broke into my house, shooting them may be a good way to keep my family safe.  Unfortunately, I fear that I would be far more likely to shoot the the cat in a moment of frustration or more likely my self on a bad day.  A gun makes that sort of thing easier than just about any other tool available to me.

That said, if you want a gun, I feel like you have every right to have one.

Now, while I do believe it is every American’s right to own a gun, there are some people who should not have one.  I don’t think it’s the governments job to keep it from happening, I just think it’s a bad idea.  The scenario that people paint for me is the movie theater shooting that happened a while back.  If someone in the audience had been armed, they could have shot back.  The problem is that with my luck, the guy shooting back would be the nimrod behind me that can’t figure out how to keep his soda off the floor and when he took that shot, guess who’d be between him and Batman?

I’ll get off that soapbox.  Today something terrible happened.  A guy did something desperate and stupid.  I don’t know why.  Until we do, we cannot do anything about it.  Regulating book bags and tightening gun legislation is not the answer.  Neither would have prevented this.  The prevention is in looking at why the guy felt the need to take that action.  We may never know but it’s worth a look.

My thoughts, my prayers, my dearest hopes for peace go out to the families of those who’s lives have been shattered today.  Nothing can bring those souls back and there is no retribution that will ease the pain.  May whatever greater power you hold dear give you comfort in this time and if you have no faith, then my hope is that you will find comfort elsewhere.  Turn to your community or just rant on a blog.  Sometimes people suck, but sometimes they can be amazing too.

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