I have been grieving. As have most of you, along with the country. I wanted to wait until the families started to bury their loved ones before voicing my opinion.
Immediately after the incident and before all the evidence was collected and facts were divulged, people used facebook to voice their opinions on what needs to be done. I kept my mouth shut to allow the anti-gunners and pro-gunners to advocate their positions.
Back and forth it went and I felt like saying “shame on you, please let the families bury their loved ones before you debate your positions”. After days of reading posts, I realized these hardliners views would never change. It wasn’t just guns, either. There were pro-God and anti-God messages. Some were blaming the mother of the shooter and others were saying she’s a victim. People were blaming violent movies, video games and music (again). The more I read, the more I realized that we are part of the problem.
We are quick to judge, short-tempered and prejudiced. But, some of us are downright evil. I believe evil walks this earth. Evil people do evil things. While “experts” try to figure out what motivates evil people to commit such acts, I say there is no explanation. There certainly isn’t any explanation that will make those injured feel better. Evil will find a way.
So, where do I stand? Let me start by saying that blaming a gun for what happened is like blaming the microphone for Bob Costas saying stupid shit. It is not the guns that cause people to commit murder but hatred in their minds and hearts.
Here is what I know to be true: The worst mass murders in U.S. history have been non-gun. The worst school massacre was the Bath, Michigan School Massacre and involved explosives. The worst domestic terrorist attack was the Oklahoma City Federal Building bombing which was done with a rental truck full of fertilizer based explosives. The worst foreign based terrorist attack done on September 11 was done with box cutters and commercial airliners.
In Sitka, Alaska, an 18 year old killed 4 people with a five inch knife. In Deltona, Florida, 4 men bludgeoned to death 6 people with baseball bats. All murderers were old enough to legally purchase firearms. Yet, evil choose a different method. Evil can always find a way.
Now, whether civilian gun ownership is a negative or positive for a modern society is a subject upon which intelligent people can disagree, but in combatting the phenomenon of mass murder perhaps we should focus more on the society that spawns mass murderers and less on the tools they choose. To me, murder is determined by what is in a person’s heart and not the tool in their hand.
What can we do? I know what we can’t do. That is to trust the politicians to protect us. President Obama gave a speech the other day which was similar to what Bush said. And, Bush’s speech was similar to Clinton’s.
In the wake of the worst act of American gun violence in a generation, President Barack Obama has tapped Vice President Joe Biden to lead an inter-agency task force to examine the next step in new gun control regulations and deliver “concrete recommendations in about a month.” In the meantime, stores have been sold out of their gun supplies and the NRA membership is booming. FYI, I quit them years ago.
There are hundreds of gun laws on the books and some websites I have visited say thousands. There are enough laws. We have laws for drunk driving and according to MADD in 2011, 9878 people died in drunk driving crashes. That’s 27 people murdered every day! We are not banning alcohol or vehicles. We can’t ban vehicles and we tried banning alcohol and it didn’t work. We can’t ban guns. The genie is out of the bottle.
So, back to what can we do? Let’s start with asking what would cause a person to shoot his mother at point-blank range in the face and then drive to an elementary school and shoot little children? I read that he had Asperger’s Syndrome? Could that have been the problem? What about the medications he may have been on? A former classmate said he was a devil worshiper. Bingo! The kid was evil. I think his mother had issues as well. She taught her kid how to shoot and didn’t lock up her weapons. Sympathetic neighbors say she was over-whelmed. Sorry, to me she is just as guilty.
What we can do is explore all options that may save a child. Maybe, hire armed guards – some of our veterans would be glad to do it and there are many looking for work. We could hire retirees with firearm permits (hint! hint!). How about training teachers that are willing to volunteer to take courses and become licensed firearm experts. Maybe, some of them already are. Schools are supposed to be “gun-free”, I know, but how did that work out? Evil doesn’t care about rules.
We could install sirens in the school. Allegedly, he shot himself when he heard police sirens.
How about better background checks? Maybe, the mom qualified for a license but you may want to check who else is in the household. Guess what? If you have a devil worshiping kid with Asperger’s, you don’t get five guns! You don’t get one gun!
We need to do more and do better with regards to mental disease. I am not a doctor but as a parent/grandparent, I say this kid should have been in an institution. Inpatient only!
In conclusion, out of the horror emerged an incredible act of selflessness and bravery by one teacher who spent her final moments trying to protect her young students from harm. Victoria Soto, 27, a first-grade teacher at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., ushered her students into a closet, and in so doing placed her body between them and the assailant.
Her cousin, Jim Wiltsie told ABC News “I’m just proud that Vicki had the instincts to protect her kids from harm. It brings peace to know that Vicki was doing what she loved, protecting the children, and, in our eyes, she’s a hero.”
We need to do something, try something, so our young teachers don’t have to put themselves in harm’s way. To the friend’s and families of the victim’s, time moves too slowly at times of tragedy and I am truly sorry for your loss. I hope the Spirit, whoever it is or whatever you believe, heals your hearts. May you find comfort and peace. Words fall short of expressing my sorrow.