I have two children, now grown up, and from the moment they were born we have done all we could to love, nurture, protect and keep them safe. Sending them to school was part of this and we chose schools carefully to ensure that the environment was loving, nurturing, protected and safe. I am sure this is the hope for all parents across the world and I cannot begin to imagine the horror the parents of the seventeen children slaughtered at school in Florida last week – or should I say ‘more children’ because these dreadful events are shockingly, unbelievably regular in occurrence. I am not going to enter into an argument about guns and gun-ownership, and facts and figures, and the political power of the gun lobby, but I would like to share a moving post I read on Instagram.
This is from a father of three children who lives in the USA:
I went and did something different today. I went to church and prayed. I lit 17 candles for the families who lost everything a few days ago. Losing a child is so unfathomable we don’t even have a word to describe the parent who does.
So it is within the spirit of trying something new that I’m going to use whatever influence I may have to beg us to do something different. Instead of leaving me a comment, send your local and state representatives and congressmen comments. Engage in conversations with neighbors. Engage with people that don’t agree with you. Let your hunting friends know you’re not going to take anything away from them.
On the other side, hunters, (and I have many friends that are) something has to give. We’ve heard your arguments for years. People are dying. This kid bought his weapon legally. There is no reason whatsoever for him to have had access to that weapon.
Will a ban stop all the killings? No. But can we at least make it difficult for them to happen? Yes. Isn’t that better than not? Children are dying in our schools! Churches! Concerts!
Undoubtedly our division is real. Notice how many country music stars have spoken up about this subject even though they were witness to one of the worst massacres in recent history in Las Vegas.
Why? Because if they bring it up or support any sort of gun control, the backlash would be substantial. Such is our divide. Which is why I’m asking us to engage in conversations. And if you don’t agree with a weapons ban, at least think about going with it.
Why not? You have nothing to lose. Had there been one in place there would be 17 families doing what they would do on a Saturday instead of burying loved ones and suffering immeasurable pain for the rest of their lives…I repeat…17! Sure It’s easy to be cynical and throw blame all around and continue the status quo. Or we speak up and try to make a difference. Let’s not let these kids die in vain, or the next ones…or the next ones. Peace.