Every time this happens, social media, news broadcasts, et al say “I’m praying for the those affected in __________”. I’m not praying. Granted I’m not religious – I waffle between agnosticism and atheistic and probably a bit more toward the latter – but no god would have anything to do with these tragedies that are utterly of our own making.
There is nothing I can say, whether it be to a god or to my neighbor or to my coworkers, that will belay the pain that the families of the victims will feel for the rest of their lives. Besides, it has clearly done no good in the wake of all the previous tragedies. There is nothing you can say to a god or to me that will take away my anger about hearing about episode after episode of gun violence in this country. Whether it is Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook, Charleston, Columbine, Colorado Springs or San Bernardino; or whether it is the clinically depressed person that purchases a gun for the sole purpose of taking his/her own life in their bedroom; or whether it is the young child who accidentally discharges a firearm and kills his younger brother or friend or himself. My anger and frustration will not go away.
If you believe that prayer will help with that, I wish you well. Your god or devil or whatever has no bearing on this – these tragedies are purely human borne. Until we understand that violence simply does not solve anything, until we understand that it is not normal to look for exits every time you walk into a strange building, until we understand that carrying a 9mm into Starbucks to order your latte really shouldn’t be necessary, and until we understand that we actually have the ability to change every damn one of those things, then our society is simply beyond hope.
This isn’t about politics – you can read my previous post about my views on gun control and I’m not backing down from those opinions – this is about being a decent fucking part of the human race. And there is no higher power that has anything whatsoever to do with that.
I do not pray when I go to bed at night, and I won’t start tonight. Tomorrow, I will continue to teach my kids to the best of my ability and do what little good I can do on a daily basis. I will not go out and apply for a concealed carry permit. I will not go out and buy a gun to keep in my bedside table. I refuse to go through my daily routine in fear of something like this happening at my school or anywhere else.
We have brought this on ourselves. So we need to fix it.