Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Thoughts on Orlando

I am nauseated by the headlines coming out of Orlando. Thinking about it makes me feel physically ill. I can't click on the links; I can't read the stories. My eyes glaze over as I skim the sensationalistic words - I can't bring myself to read the timelines, or the stories of heroics, or the biographies of victims. I don't have it in me.

I'm tired of prayers. I’m so tired of them. I’m tired of everyone saying “praying for wherever!” because honestly, that approach doesn’t appear to be working. I'm tired of hashtags and retweets, making it so simple you don't even have to write your own words to express sympathy, just click and copy someone else's. I’m angry that celebrities and politicians, once again, are making the requisite sympathetic statements and demanding change but not actually doing anything to create it. I hate seeing people with power asking “how can we let this keep happening?” and then never thinking about it again until the next big event.

I know that gun control isn’t the whole answer. I know that a person who is determined to hurt people will find a way to do it, regardless of the weapon that is available to them. I know that if it isn’t guns, it’ll be knives, or bombs, or something. But I just can’t understand that we make it so easy for it to be guns. I just can’t wrap my head around it. Gun control isn’t whole answer, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t any of the answer. It’s certainly part of it. There is no reason whatsoever that a person needs access to weaponry of such mass destruction, and with hardly any questions asked before they get that kind of access. How is that acceptable?

Almost ten years ago, my world was shattered when a mass shooting occurred on my college campus, just a few buildings over from where I was in class. I thought that would be the worst it would ever be – 32 families destroyed by a single man. I am shocked, though I probably shouldn’t be, that almost ten years since that horrible day, 50 more families are suffering this abomination, left to pick of the pieces of broken lives, missing their loved ones, because almost nothing has changed. Once again, one man had the power to create carnage and devastation. What will it take for the reaction to be more than shaking of heads and memes circulating on the internet? Why is this ok? Why are we not, collectively, angrier that this has become the norm in this country? I just don’t understand. I can’t understand. And once again, I am so sad, so heartbroken that this has happened, and struggling with the knowledge that it seems like it will just keep happening, time after time.

No comments :