Another shooting this morning. From the time I started writing this post, the numbers and facts have changed. Probably by tomorrow, there will be more information.
As the reporters headline with the deadliest mass shooting in America, it makes me sick to my stomach. I know why the reporters categorize like that and certainly it is true, but when they compare the quantity of fatalities and injuries to other shootings in the country it makes it seem as if the others don’t matter. That those other shootings are too small.
The mystery author- P.D. James was once asked why her descriptions of the murder, when the victim is first discovered, were so gruesome. She said that it should be shocking to the character and consequently to the reader. As she described, murder is shocking and is horrible and it should shock every time it is witnessed.
This shooting in Las Vegas is horrible, but what is more horrible is according to the CDC, "on an average day, 93 Americans are killed with guns." The act that any one person is even injured by guns is horrible much less killed. We should be shocked.
What gets me is that as a society, there is all the commentary about, “How did this happen? What can we do to prevent this from occurring again?”
If we can find there is a reason; mental illness, disgruntled, etc. then we feel a little bit better- “Whew," we think, "This is a problem that doesn’t relate to us.”
Or does it?
How we deceive ourselves. Do we think that we are innocent in this evil of one to another? Do we think that our societal love of violence and guns doesn’t impact everyone? We can see it with our violent movies, video guns and web images. By the grace of God we were not the ones on the news tonight.
Every time we talk about our violent society we will tsk, tsk and say it is a shame. But do we do anything about it? We may, for a couple of days, hug our loved ones a little tighter, hesitate about going in crowded venues, and maybe decide not to go to the latest blow 'em up movie. But, after a week or so, we go about life as we always have. What if we decide not to monetarily support violent movies or games? What would that say to those who feed into societal's appetite for those things? What if we got really serious about gun control?
Many years ago I attended a young mothers' group that had a variety of speakers. Once there was a psychologist speaking about the effects of television, especially violent television on children. While the studies were conclusive that yes, viewing violence causes more violence, the reaction to the problem was, "let's do another study." I sat there in bewilderment.
Just turn off the television.
Violent television programs conclusively demonstrated violence in children, yet no one wanted to acknowledge that fact. I guess there would have to be an accountability that many parents didn't want to take and so, the response was, let's get more information rather than do something now.
I know that the gun issue is very complicated and I am not condemning guns. But I am wondering what can we do about it because we are the problem and the solution.
I think we should be horrified when we hear of attacks like we did this morning. We should take notice and have dialogue about it. We should work toward some type of solution. We should be a society that is not complacent about anyone's murder. We should not forget.
The thing is...
What happens in Vegas..... will happen everywhere else if we are not vigilant and start being accountable for the society we have created. We need to recognize our insatiable appetite for violence and our greed. The types of weapons that are available to consumers goes way beyond having a rifle to harm the weasel or fox who is killing one's livelihood. Someone is making quite a hefty profit.
I know that I am thinking about how I contribute to society. I have been known to watch violent movies. How violent is violent? How do I interact with the person on the fringe of society? What can I do when I hear about violent things? How do/should I respond?
My nephew has an interesting blog about today's shooting. Click here to read.
What about you? What is your reaction to the shooting?