Processing the Unimaginable

Like many of you, I am still trying to process how something like the Las Vegas massacre could occur in this country.  No one yet knows the motivation of the shooter, someone who doesn’t fit the typical mass shooter profile.  Thoughts and prayers are fine, but action is needed, and I am afraid that our so-called leaders in Washington will once again dodge any real leadership, wait out the public outrage, and do nothing because their souls have been bought and paid by the NRA.

My husband is a gun owner, and I am not against owning guns.   However, my husband strongly believes, as I do, that there is no possible need for the average, non-military citizen to own any kind of assault weapon.   They should be banned in every state.   Their only purpose is to kill and injure a lot of people quickly and efficiently.  They are an instrument of war.  I don’t buy the argument of the NRA that if legislation is passed to ban one type of gun, that opens the door for the banning of all guns.   And if you tell me you need an assault weapon to hunt deer or moose, then you’re a damn lousy hunter and you should never be allowed to hold a hunting license.

Why is it that the right of this man to legally own dozens of assault weapons outweighs the right of 59 people to pursuit life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, not to mention the hundreds of injured whose lives will never be the same?   People will argue that the guns didn’t kill these victims, this lunatic did.  But he couldn’t possibly have inflicted the horrific number of casualties without the assault weapons that he possessed and bought legally.

Any one of us or our loved ones could have been at that concert.   My daughter is a big country music fan.   Someone like this shooter could be living in my town, in my state, and someone I love dearly could be next.

Do we need to look elsewhere besides gun control for answers?   Why are there so many angry white men out there?   Women aren’t committing these mass shootings.   This guy supposedly was a millionaire so he wasn’t someone who had been screwed by society or had a grudge to bear against a group of country music lovers. He was the son of a psychopathic criminal – was it written in his DNA and was his heredity his destiny?

I don’t have answers.   All I know is that every member of the House of Representatives is up for reelection in 2018.  It’s time to start holding every single one of them accountable.   If they don’t vote for some kind of common sense gun control, we vote them out.   I‘m not yet cynical enough to believe that this country is beyond all hope of redemption.  I do believe that most of us are good and kind and strong and we need our representatives in Congress to be the same.

If there is anything that history has taught us, it’s that good can triumph evil and that we should “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”  Margaret Mead

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