“God Isn’t Fixing This”: Apathy Towards Gun Violence

It happened again yesterday afternoon (well afternoon on the East Coast). Another mass shooting but this time in a social services facility in San Bernardino, California. This shooting came not even a week after the Planned Parenthood shooting in Colorado Springs, Colorado the day after Thanksgiving. What I find so disgusting about the normal recurrence of shootings is how a sector of the public and politicians (many in the GOP) have turn a blind eye to gun violence. What angers me even more is how certain political parties have created an atmosphere where gun violence is allowed to continue and where radical people feel they have a right to shoot up people who have different beliefs or attitudes to certain ideas than they do. Yes, this is in reference to the PP clinic shootings and reported shootings of Muslims before and after the Paris attacks. Who do I blame for this? Politicians and how they are feeding fear to American society of anyone who is not a white anglo-saxon or the condemnation of anyone who doesn’t fall into the Extreme Religious Right’s interpretation of Christianity. As I write there are people who are demonizing Muslim Americans just because they are Muslim, Syrians because many are Muslim, and institutions where finding accurate information on their finances is hard to do. We are far too quick to point the finger without taking the time to know the facts. With that said…

What I find most disturbing after the San Bernardino shooting is how several political candidates chose to react. “Our prayers are with the victims, their families, and the first responders in San Bernardino…” (Ted Cruz), “Our thoughts and prayers are with #SanBernardino,” (Lindsay Graham), “My thoughts and prayers are with the victims, families, and brave first responders…” (Dr. Rand Paul), “Please keep the victims of #SanBernardino, California in your prayers.” (Paul Ryan). Coming from the GOP, I found these statements empty. Why? As one of my friends on Facebook pointed out the statements would have more meaning if the GOP took gun violence seriously. But, instead they say what is meant to be a well meaning and heartfelt statement but devoid it of all meaning by not taking action to prevent gun violence. As someone wrote in the Huffington Post these statements of praying for the victims and their families is a way to shrug off blame for gun violence that is far too common. It is also a way for the above politicians to say that increased gun violence is not a result of their inaction on the issue and that they don’t have control over it. That is absolute BS. Increased gun violence isn’t God’s fault or the fault of any religion for that matter (in Christianity God gives us free will to choose between good and bad), it’s our own fault because as a society we don’t want to grapple with the issue. So many Americans are afraid that their precious guns, that the Second Amendment gives them the right to hold, will be taken away. How horrible. But if society and those in it think that the right for everyone to own a gun is more important than an innocent human life, then there is something wrong with our society and those people are mental. But what I find even more disturbing is amongst the Religious Right who believes in toting guns and their support of capital punishment while opposing abortion. That is so messed up… So, they are not truly “Pro-Life”. Killing is killing wether it be an unborn child, a mother dying from a pregnancy gone horribly wrong where help could be provided, capital punishment, or an innocent person being murdered by a gun.

So why do I think guns are so prevalent in our society? Hysteria. Hysteria that we are going to be killed in our homes during a robbery, hysteria that we will be killed at school or work, hysteria that we are going to be killed by terrorists (you are more likely to die in a car accident), hysteria that we believe that everyone out there is going to get us. Where this comes from I have no clue but what I do know is that if the politicians are willing to put into use laws that control gun sales, purchases, and access, then our society will be much better off and much safer. Fewer guns mean fewer deaths. I am over simplifying the gun issue, there needs to be great social change at all levels to decrease gun violence. But what cannot be over simplified is this: God isn’t going to fix the gun violence issue for us, we need to stop trying to pray the problem away and instead need to get down in the dirt to create the change that is needed. That is the only thing that will save this country from gun violence.

 

 

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2 thoughts on ““God Isn’t Fixing This”: Apathy Towards Gun Violence

  1. Excellent post with so much I agree with. it is time we stop burying our head in whatever philosophical/political bucket that is handy and wake up to the fact we need to make the changes because no one else will.

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