Here we are again
A nightmare we know too well
The familiar mix of emotions
Here we are again
An anchor of resignation pulling us down
The familiar questions
Is this enough?
Here we are again.
A broken man.
A broken world.
And now, hundreds more broken people.
I am so tired. I am tired of waking up to more and more news like this. Tired of “thoughts and prayers” rhetoric with no action. My intent is not to politicize death or take advantage of horrific circumstances. But I am a citizen of the United States of America begging for her country to see reason before someone I love becomes part of this massacre we call a Right. Begging for open and honest national dialogue on mental health issues.
is not a “well organized militia”,
is not the work of a healthy mind.
We’ve sacrificed our friends
We’ve sacrificed our family
We’ve sacrificed our children
To the God of Arms.
How many must die? How much blood must be shed?
I worry there is no limit. Nothing changed after Sandy Hook. Once we allow the sacrifice of children to the God of Arms, there may be no turning back. As far as I can tell there has been no significant gun control laws created in the last decade. There has been no significant increase in access to mental health help. We have failed and we continue to pay for it. Instead, here is a incomplete list of mass shootings we have had in the last decade.
2017 Orange County, FL: 5 killed.
2017 Fort Lauderdale, FL: 5 killed, 6 injured.
2016 Orlando: 49 killed, 58 wounded.
2015 San Bernardino, CA: 14 killed, 22 wounded.
2015 Charleston, SC: 9 killed.
2015 Roseburg, OR: 9 killed, 9 wounded.
2013 D.C.: 34 killed, 12 wounded.
2013 Santa Monica CA: 5 killed.
2012 Aurora CO: 12 killed, 58 wounded
2012 Newtown, CN (Sandy Hook): 21 children, 6 adults killed.
2012 Oakland, CA: 7 killed, 1 wounded
2012 Oak Creek, WI: 6 killed, 3 wounded.
2012 Minneapolis, MN: 6 killed, 2 wounded.
2011 Tucson, AZ: 6 killed, 11 wounded.
2011 Seal Beach, CA: 8 killed, 1 wounded.
2009 Fort Hood, TX: 13 killed, 30 wounded.
2007 Virginia Tech: 32 killed.
Information and more details can be found on USA Today & LA Times
Workplace violence. Domestic dispute revenge, religiously motivated, racially motivated. All senseless. All too easy to commit. All the work of broken men.
Sunday night, perhaps just as hundreds ran with fear from a lone gunman, Brett and I watch a favorite episode from The West Wing (Clip here). President Bartlett addresses a crowd, hours after an act of terror takes too many lives.
“The streets of heaven are too crowded with angels tonight.
They’re our students, and our teachers, and our parents, and our friends.
The streets of heaven are too crowded with angels.
And every time we think we’ve measured our capacity to meet a challenge
We look up and we’re reminded that that capacity may well be limitless
This is a time for American heroes.
We will do what is hard.
We will achieve what is great.
This is a time for American heroes and we reach for the stars.
God bless their memory.”
I’m not sure how to be an American hero in 2017. I really don’t know anymore. But I do bless the memories of the hundreds of lost souls, taken too soon. I bless the families of those touched by great loss. And I sincerely pray that we wake up from this nightmare, reach for the stars, and pull some guiding light down before it’s too late.