Social Issues: Guns and Government, Hate and Anger
Children come into the world - tiny, fragile little bundles of innocence totally dependent on someone else to feed them, keep them clean, and protect them. They are like clay and the adults around them – the potters.
Some children are born with perfect fingers and toes, eyes that sparkle; born into families that love them and have the means to care for them. Some are born with the same perfect features but are born to a single mother or a family where generations of dysfunction have prevailed.
There are also children who are born to both kinds of families – the “haves” and the “have nots”. These are the children born with visible physical defects who face years or, a lifetime of challenges. And finally, there are the children born with no visible signs of imperfection but with a chemical imbalance affecting their ability to process information or communicate skillfully. If we are not responsible and diligent, any of these children can become a killer.
“In their innocence, very young children know themselves to be light and love. If we will allow them, they can teach us to see ourselves the same way.”―Michael Jackson
Opinions on gun control, government regulations are raging. Some blame the NRA (National Rifle Association) and some blame our government for the increasing violence in our society. The blame game is being played out in high definition on our television screens, in bold print in our newspapers, and across banners on our social media sites. As a society, we need to examine all the issues and listen to all the opinions but it seems that the primary issue is being ignored. That issue is HATRED and ANGER.
Without hatred and anger, we would not witness increasing violence against strangers. Without hatred and anger, there would be no domestic violence. Without hatred and anger… there would be no blame game to be played. Instead, our attention and resources could be focused on real solutions to the real problem of HATRED and ANGER.
All the gun control and government regulation won’t stop the violence until we solve the root cause of violence and that is hatred and anger. Children are not born hating and angry. They learn it from their parents, their community, and from exposure to outside influences.
A pathetic legacy
- As a society, we preach tolerance yet we remain intolerant.
- As a society, we preach kindness yet we treat others unkindly.
- As a society, we preach equality, yet we expect preferential treatment.
Are we the potters we want to be? Are we molding the hearts and minds of our children with the care and concern they deserve. Are we being the responsible adults they look to for guidance and protection? Is it easier for us as a society to pick up the pieces of shattered lives than it is to prevent them from shattering in the first place? Are we that pathetic?
Questions to ask ourselves
Children are born innocent, kind, and loving. Their laughter and joy is the substance of photos that warm our hearts and poetry that makes us smile. So how and when does it change?
Does it change when parents are too busy to listen? Does it change when it becomes unacceptable to lose in sports? Does it change when family dynamics rob a child of a childhood and push them to become adults too soon? Is it changed by race? Religion? Disability? Poverty?
Are too many children not getting adequate or proper nutrition? Are we limiting the creative expression with robotic activities? Are chemical exposures damaging the brain’s ability to form balanced thoughts? And finally, what are we as a society doing when we see the change occurring? Do we turn a blind eye pretending it isn’t our problem? Is it easier to ignore until innocent people have died. Is it really easier to pour our time and resources into a grieving community after the fact than it is to invest in preventing a mind filled with hatred or anger from inflicting so much pain?
“Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself...You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.” - ―Khalil Gibran
- Mental Health America: Welcome
Mental Health America: Mental Health America is dedicated to promoting mental health, preventing mental disorders and achieving victory over mental illness through advocacy, education, research and services.
Have we hurt enough to do the right thing now?
Yes, we are compassionate and caring people. When tragedy strikes, we are quick to donate, quick to send flowers, quick to tell others what we have done to ease the pain of a grieving family or community. Where were we when the first signs of hatred or anger appeared? Where were we when we first noticed the cruelty to animals? Where were we when we noticed the obsession with violent video games?
Where were we when we noticed the mood swings or the bed wetting? Where were we when our neighbor began isolating themselves or spoke of not sleeping well? Where were we when we noticed the new tattoos or the change in clothing preference? Did we reach out? Did we make ourselves available to listen? Did we offer to help the jobless find a job or the over-extended pay the bills? Were we willing to talk about depression or anger and provide information on resources? Were we willing to notify the professionals or authorities and live with the consequences?
Guns and government regulations don’t kill people. Anger, hate, and greed are the killers and until we deal with the root cause, there will be more tragic, sad days ahead. This is the dialogue that needs to begin in our own living rooms and extend to our neighbors and community leaders. The loss of innocent lives hurts. Does it hurt enough to do something that can turn hate and anger into love and peace?
© 2012 Linda Crist, All rights reserved.