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What must we do...?
I cannot believe that another school has fallen prey to a school shooting. This time, 27 people are dead: Six adults; 20 children, and yes the predator. My heart grieves for everyone: the parents of the children, the families of the adults, and the sole survivor of the shooter. As I continue to hear the reports coming from the news, several thoughts come to mind: How can a tragedy like this happen again? And whose to blame?
Do we look to the parents for the answers? Were their children neglected? Was the institution divided due to divorce? Did the parents permit their children to play violent video games? Were their children exposed to the world of entertainment as depicted on the big screen? How in the world did they obtain such guns?
When we look into these questions: then we need to question the establishment. For instance: the issue of divorce. From what I last heard divorce rates in America are above 50%. That staggering. That means that over half of the marriages will ultimately end in divorce. What the statistics do not show are the long-term effects divorce has on children. What message are they receiving from parents and, yes, society. Believe it or not, the identity of a child is greatly influenced and effect by the dissolution of the conjugal bond. If a parent openly expresses his/her anger toward the other; how is the child suppose to feel; knowing very well that he/she is the product of the parents union. From a societal perspective, are we teaching our children how to walk away from their roles and responsibilities as they grow and mature. It's okay to abort and abandon regardless of the consequences for the generations to come.
And how was it that divorce became so pervasive and prevalent in our society? HMMMN? Could it be the implementation of "No Fault Divorce?" I wonder. Whose great idea was that? "No Fault!" Really? We have made it too easy for everyone! Marriage is no longer a life-time commitment: it is about convenience. In as long as it does not interfere with our personal and social life...then it must be okay. But when it disrupts a person's desire to do what he/she desires, then there is a problem.
Let's not forget about the influence that video games and movies have on a child's psyche. Several years ago, I did a paper on the effects television have on children. What I found particular amazing is that children have a difficult time in their formative years differentiating reality from fiction. When you couple this to how life-like many video games and how violence is almost glorified, is it any wonder our children walk around wanting to harm others. By the way, what is the grounds for permitting such violence to enter our homes, and society...? Oh, I forgot...it is the freedom of speech. HMMMMN? I believe we need to put some parameters around the definition of speech. A person can not yell fire in a public place for the fear of inciting panic, but it's okay to bombard our youth with images that only infiltrate the imagination.
And finally, how is it that a person can buy a semi-automatic weapon? Oh yeah! I forgot--that is protected by the second amendment...the right to bear arms. How many more life's must be destroyed before certain laws are sanctioned that prevent people from purchasing weapons that are primarily used in our military? Some years ago, a person made mention that if a person really wants to kill someone, he or she is going to do it. Guns do not kill...people do. There is truth to that statement. But take today, for instance. how far do you think that that 20 year old would have gone had he used a bat? How many lives do you think would have been taken? Just saying.
I believe it is time for us to wake up to the elephant standing in the room...where does the change begin? Sure, we can look toward the government to facilitate change. But I have a better idea...let us not so much look toward our government...but rather let us start looking toward God.