A friend just sent us a note that 3 people in his backyard of Birmingham, Alabama were killed a few days back, one of them he knew going back a long time. Like many, his desperate plea is for prayers. Comforting maybe for the survivors, in the moment and on the surface, but clearly not a solution. Because the problem is only getting worse, despite all the best intentions of countless prayers. His message steeled my resolve even more.
Thank you sharing this my fiend. It is with continued shock, grief and sorrow that we are once again reminded just how bad this crisis has become and just how important our mission is to stop it. This past year I have been slowly learning, realizing, that it doesn’t matter if we knew them or not, nor “how many”, nor if they were children or adults.
The tragedy is that we are forced to consider, and then attempt to qualify these different aspects of mass shootings on a near daily basis now. Which ones to highlight and report on. Which ones to make a big national deal out of… Child versus adult. How many. Did we know them. Where were they. As if one is better or worse than the other in some way…. When it is all terribly tragic, and worse perhaps, almost entirely preventable.
The fact that if we blink, or take a day off, yet another, or five more, or ten more, transpire somewhere else in our nation that week. It is an endless parade of human loss and families destroyed now in America’s most personal and devastating war.
I am so very sorry that this hit so close to home for you brother.
Long bear hug,
One of the most disturbing images that has burned itself into my memory is that of a weasly little man called Ted Cruz a few weeks back. One of the biggest impediments to stopping gun violence in America, he decides to show his face down in Uvalde, Texas… turn it into a political campaign event for himself.
A mass of reporters from other countries had flown in to the States to cover the story. One of them had the courage to ask Cruz, who is a senator of what’s turned into a mess of a country and therefore has some power to actually improve things for the shocked and devastated Americans, what he’s going to do about this latest mass shooting.
Cruz blusters around the issue claiming they need to “research it more”. The reporters all laugh. Because the answer was ridiculous. The idea that the United States needs to “research more” to stop mass murders instead of pass laws to stop them is a foolish one, either a silly attempt at deception of only the most intellectually compromised citizens, or the ramblings of a true idiot with limited mental capacity.
Cruz then goes on to mention “American Exceptionalism”, to which the whole gaggle of reporters start laughing. “How can you possibly justify American exceptionalism when your government permits these mass murders and won’t do anything to prevent them?” they ask. “I’m sorry you think American exceptionalism is funny” Cruz replies. As if he’s just delivered a winning jab at some junior high school political debate.
At this very moment all eyes and cameras abandoned the man, recognizing that he didn’t have anything substantive to add to the story nor the larger discussion about gun violence or mass shootings in America.
One can imagine foreign journalists and reporters discussing having to fly to America yet again to cover one of their incessant mass shootings. How they must be both shocked and entertained at the stupidity of the people. The conversations they must have amongst each other… “what did the Americans say this time? Will they finally start passing laws to prevent gun violence there?” “No, on the contrary. They want to pray more and increase guns in all their schools.”
It is a record of the times. The year is 2022.