Yesterday’s senseless killing of kids and teachers by a crazed young gunman was hardly surprising was it?
It was shocking but only because of the youth of the kids and the sheer numbers involved.
It was kind of a new twist on things. And that novelty made it sensational, literally.
If you have kids you connected to this one in the way you didn’t with the mass killing on the Army base, for example.
And I’ve been looking at the reaction to this atrocity on social media and TV etc.
And I’m struck by one thing.
So much of the reaction ISN’T “hey let’s abolish sales of automatic weapons because that just makes sense right?”, as it would be in any other western democracy.
Instead it starts with stuff like “Now we all realize that you can’t stop a determined mass killer…” and “Now obviously we all know that gun control can’t work…”
And it reminds me a lot of the mentality of Ireland (where I grew up btw) in the early 1980s when we couldn’t imagine life without regular terrorist atrocities and constant vigilance for bombs and excessive security precautions. That had become our life, so we kind of got comfortable with it.
And now I look back think how crazy that was.
I can vividly recall being struck with the ingenuity of the IRA bomb that almost killed Margaret Thatcher in the 80s. And not feeling anything about the fact that “our side” had almost assassinated the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
I remember being excited about the mechanics of the device itself. It was something new. A new twist on a by then very familiar pattern of bombs and shootings. This was the Pink Floyd of IRA bombs.
I think that America has sunk into a similar lack of imagination doldrums with regard to guns.
Where there is a will there’s a way. It’s that simple.
Hey it worked for our seemingly intractable and extremely tiresome conflict!