The tears flow. Anger, a deep and pervasive anger, wracks the body, and the soul.
We knew there would be an “again,” but the pain is never lessened by the foreboding.
There is so much to say. And nothing left to say.
There is so much heartbreak and loss. So much loss. And trauma. And emptiness. And rage. And a knot of mixed emotions that propel us to a sadness that defies our attempts to rationalize these horrors. As they come, once again, in quick succession.
We like to think of ourselves as a “can-do” country. But we can’t do anything about this plague on our children? The fabric of communities torn apart?
We like to think we are a special country, and when it comes to gun violence, we are — for all the wrong reasons. For reasons that can be measured in graves, and empty desks in classrooms, and lives that will not reach their promise. Then there are the hundreds of thousands of children who have witnessed school shootings. And the millions who have had to imagine and prepare for horrors like these. No other country that matches us in wealth or privilege has this problem. Not even close.
How can this be acceptable? How can we do nothing? How can we choose to make this horrific pain part of our national birthright?
There are answers to all of these questions. But they don’t add up to any semblance of sense.
This is senseless. And all who condone it, all who offer meaningless “thoughts and prayers,” all who say the answer is more guns and fewer restrictions, are complicit in the carnage.
I do not think that is a majority of Americans. Not by a long shot. There is a lot more common sense and empathy in the population at large than in the elected leaders who offer fealty to the most extreme interpretations of the Second Amendment. There are measures that can make us safer. There are steps we can take.
There are no perfect answers, but to accept the unacceptable must never be acceptable.