What do you say about the mass murder of a bunch of grade school kids, their teachers, and the devastation that is left on a day like today? There is nothing but outrage and sadness and I, like most people, have my own favorite people who I want to blame for this horrible event. There seems to be no justice or righteousness in this world, there can be nothing to justify such an act nor can any of our petty political views touch the enormous sadness and futility of such an event. I am a Buddhist and I meditate and yet all I want to do is yell and scream in the faces of those who I blame for enabling a damaged fucking asshole to murder 20 children. I want to punch every person blabbing about the second amendment in their mouth til they are spitting teeth and shove their heads into the piles of gore left over in a Connecticut school and say “see, motherfucker!?”
But the fact is that I know that’s not the problem, lots of people have guns and don’t murder random strangers and children. A maniac with nothing more exotic than a pick up truck could kill just as many folks by running them over. The tool that murder was committed with is an inanimate object, it has no power to act without the person behind it deciding. I personally don’t like guns or people owning guns, but I’m also not so naive that I think that if this psychotic person didn’t have a gun that he wouldn’t have found some other way to murder innocent people. He would have killed someone, several someones, one way or another, the firearms just made it easier.
In the coming days we will hear blame being laid all about, on the mental health system (or lack of it) in our country, on warning signs which were ignored, blame will be placed on pro and anti gun positions, on schools for not being fortified bunkers and on police for not being psychic. There will be investigation after investigation, the shooters life will be examined under a microscope and at the end of it 27 people will still be dead, and no amount of blame or understanding motivation or political solution will change the fact that one psycho can, for a limited time, run amok and forever destroy the lives of families and the community he or she chooses to terrorize.
Frankly i don’t give a fuck why this person shot those kids. Why wont help me erase the image of their school being evacuated or the mental picture of an adult aiming a weapon at a 10-year-old. Knowing why will only reinforce the idea that “that guy” was the only one capable of doing this horrible thing and reinforcing the lie that none of us could ever, ever do something so evil. The plain fact is that all of us could be that killer, it would only require a traumatic brain injury, a string of bad luck, some bad drugs, a disconnect in the electro-chemical pathways in our brains and any of us could be that person, in military fatigues, shooting at children on a cold December morning. The great danger lies in us not recognizing that potentiality, I’m sure no one thought they could be the one to help round-up victims for the holocaust but in the end it took hundreds of thousands of otherwise innocent German citizens to make the tragedy happen and I bet each and every one of them never dreamed they could be a part of it. We let our government invade Iraq, jail asinine levels of our own citizens, and let our fellow citizens die of easily treatable illness because any time we talk about the shared burden we all have as a society some fucking moron screams “socialism!” I look at the Connecticut school shooter and wonder “how the fuck did they let this happen!?” and yet I am pretty sure that our children will look back on the way we live and treat each other in 2012 and say “how the fuck did they let that happen!?”
In a way we are all part of this asshole murdering those kids today. Not literally, of course, but we partake in a society that agrees to ignore the mentally ill, that chooses to look the other way when one of us is really hurting and clearly in need of some kind of intervention. If the shooter today was my neighbor I wouldn’t know his name the way i don’t know any of my current neighbors names. I wouldn’t know if he threatened to shoot up a grade school before he did it, and I wouldn’t think it was any of my business if he wanted to buy 14 guns. I (we) live in a world now where our outrage at an event can be soothed by writing an angry post on Facebook, where “tackling the problem” means hitting the “like” button on some witty political post. I look at my new baby daughter sleeping and wonder if I can ever send her off to school in a world where someone like this guy can go so far down the fucking rabbit hole that killing children seems like the only thing he can do and never have it recognized by anybody!?
We need to wake up. We, and im including myself in this, need to really take a look at our world,( the real one not the fucking fantasy that television and the internet sells us) and realize that we can not do this alone. Any of it. We can’t live this close to each other, we can’t depend on each other so much and still pretend that we are all fucking individual cowboys who don’t owe anyone else a fucking thing but that we ourselves are owed everything. A society that looks out for all of its citizens gets the warning signs when one of us goes kookoo and starts planning to shoot a school up! If we stopped looking at everyone else as competition and realized how much we need each other just to keep this crazy civilization functioning then maybe we could see when one of us is becoming unbalanced and say “hey, maybe we should talk to that guy” instead of blaming the “authorities” for not doing our jobs for us!
I don’t know. there is no easy solution, I know. But I have to believe that if we, as a country, a culture, and a society decide to start taking responsibility for each other then maybe we could be spared a few days like today. Obviously what we are doing now isn’t good enough to keep 20 little kids alive.