Why?

And when will it stop?

Sunday morning I was bombarded with news stories about the two horrendous mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton. Countless lives destroyed; forever changed. Senseless and uncalled for.

My first thought when I heard the first news reports were “why”? “Not again.” “Whats it going to take to stop these senseless acts of murder?”

And I have no idea.

But suddenly everywhere you turn, everyone has their answer. In some form or other.

Many people say it’s Trump’s fault because he uses so much hate speech. (And he does. Sorry, but if you disagree, tell me why so many of the things he says aren’t hate speech.) I demand more dignity and respect from the president of the United States.

But I do not put the blame on him alone, although he has contributed to this growing theme of hatred and intolerance in this country. Because others are playing into it as well.

Many politicians say the problem is access to guns, and we need more gun control laws. One presidential candidate basically said the heck with the second amendment [to the Constitution] and that we need gun control immediately. This is not the time to try and use this for a campaign nor is it time to jump and scream for things that may not be able to be done. Or should not be done.

Maybe these people need to read the Constitution, understand what it takes to change it, and then look into ways to pass legitimate laws to control assault weapons, buying and owning firearms, and realizing that guns are used by PEOPLE to do this. People who I believe have mental issues, because of their intense hatred for others. And these individuals will find a way somehow to get around the laws.

Maybe we need to actually enforce the laws that are already in place. What an idea.

One person even went so far as to put down another for speaking out by calling this individual a terrible defamatory name for a gay person, adding “he’s even married to a guy – what do you expect?”

What do I expect? I expect civility. Dignity. Respect for other people who are different from you and I and who have a right to their own life without being maligned by others who have a right to their own lives as well.

I expect individuals to be allowed to speak out without our president telling them they should go back where they came from! This further incites those who have no empathy and no compassion for others, who think those individuals have no right to live and need to be eradicated.

I am appalled that our president makes obnoxious and derogatory remarks about the plight of a certain city because the representative of that district is not of his political party, and then goes on to make sarcastic comments about that representative’s home being robbed. “Too bad!” That’s further contributing to the discontent and hate in this nation.

What next?

I hope and pray for no more mass shootings. But I will not be surprised, because unless we all work together to stop the hate speech, the intolerance for those who have differing views than we do, the acceptance of those who spout intolerance for those who disagree with them, the violence will continue.

Why?

Because we are too busy being offended by things which should not offend us. We are too busy turning a blind eye to injustice and the plights of others who are not in the same economic and social strata as ourselves. Whose skin color is different from ours. Who don’t have the same religious viewpoints that we do. Who don’t have the same sexual preferences that we do.

We are too busy being better than everyone else and ignoring the underlying problems that are slowly tearing this nation apart.

We are too busy being on one side or the other and refusing to sit down and negotiate with wisdom, cool heads, and common sense. And refusing to stand up to those who make comments designed to put down others and incite them to anger. Too blind to recognize and speak out against the words of hatred and insult coming from the side they’re on because to deviate from such blind loyalty would mean that maybe…just maybe…they’ve been wrong about certain things. And we can’t have that!

Now, I’m sure I’m already being de-friended by some people because I have voiced my opinion. But it’s my opinion, and I’m still entitled to it. Just as you are to yours. Until someone decides to try and figure out a way to take away that right in our Constitution.

Don’t think there’s not someone out there who might try.

I have no solution to these disasters, these horrible mass killings, but stopping the hate speech might be a good place to start. Understanding other points of view would be good also. Enforcing our existing laws might help as well!

I don’t want to hear about another mass shooting. But I’m afraid I will….

And all the finger pointing will start again. And the arguing. And the accusations.

Until we all decide to work together to solve these problems, and stop putting other people down who aren’t like us, whoever “us” may be, it’s not going to end.

How many lives will be lost, how many families destroyed, before we finally understand?

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