When Will We Have Had Enough?

Another school shooting today. 294 mass shootings in 274 days.

My kids learned in kindergarten how to hide under their desks and wait for death.

I’ve spent an hour waiting in the school parking lot after the final bell for lock-down to be lifted so I could take my terrified babies home. Third graders and kindergartners are babies. My babies.

I was in high school for the Columbine Shooting.

The year before someone called in a bomb threat at my school.

I was studying at community college for the Virginia Tech shooting. My physics study group was camped out at the table in the math and physics office wing when we got the news. We went right back to our homework. Our prof chewed the class out that we didn’t stop to grieve for those kids. “WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU GUYS?!” he raved. But he still collected our homework and assigned more.

There was no time to grieve. How do you collectively grieve for collective death and trauma on such a wide scale? You say a prayer, and move on. Or do you? When do we say we’ve had enough? When to we call these acts terrorism? When do we work on solutions? When to we realize it is insane to teach five-year-olds to hide under desks alone and terrified and wait for death? When have we had enough?

These things happen. It’s just one crazy guy. No one saw it coming. Guns aren’t the problem; people are the problem.

Ya know what? That’s the truth. Guns aren’t the problem. People making money off guns are the problem. Politicians making money off people making money off guns are the problem. People supporting a culture of toxic white masculine violence are the problem. People blaming first graders for not hiding quietly enough are the problem. People not giving other human beings time to grieve for other human beings are the problem. People who think peace is waged with a war machine are the problem. People who think death is entertainment are the problem. People who refuse to give up their guns are the problem.

Lets just suppose that every time one of these tragedies happened we all insisted on a day off school and work to grieve? Oh, right, they happen more than once a day. And nothing ever changes. The NRA swoops in with cruel propaganda campaigns and politicians issue the same stock apologies and the media interviews the grieving parents like puppets. Every. Single. Time.

I want to grow up to be a professor. I want to teach young adults. I want to teach living young adults. Blood baths and dead bodies aren’t conductive to education.

I am a mother. I want my children to inherit a world a tiny bit better than the one I got. I want my children to go to school to learn and make friends. Not spend hours drilling how to hide and sob silently for their mother who’s anxiously, frantically, desperately trying to reach her babies.

Wake up, America. You value your guns more than your children. What the fuck is wrong with you?!

When will we have had enough? When will we insist on non-violence in all that we do? When will we quit laughing at murder in the movies? When will we cry? When will we quit making victims out of kindergartners? When will we expect better of ourselves? When will we realize we deserve better? When will we have had enough?

Me, I am outraged. I’ve had enough.

Do you, America, have the balls to break up with this lover who murders your children and holds you at gun-point and refuses to let you grieve your dead babies? Do you, America, really believe in God and family? Is your faith so faint you fear letting go of weapons that have no purpose other than killing people? Do you value families enough to keep children safe and end the terror they face?

Oh, America, you aren’t so beautiful covered in the blood and brains of murdered kids and tears of grieving mothers. Have you had enough? Will you do something about your problem? Will you quit saying you’re sorry and finally get some help?

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Image Credit – Shannon Calvert

 

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About m

My ego wants to think I'm a writer but my heart knows I'm just another one of God's Kids who sometimes has words to say. 2.5 human kids and 3 feline kids call me Mom. Or Mooooooom. Or mewom, depending which you ask. My most recent completed endeavor was finishing BA's in Religious Studies and American Studies. I don't remember what free time is but I think I like to spend it sleeping or playing in the mud on a river bank.
This entry was posted in non-violence, violence and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to When Will We Have Had Enough?

  1. Pingback: When Will We Have Had Enough? | Leonard Durso

  2. zdunno03 says:

    I hope you don’t mind that I reblogged this. You said it much better than I could.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Reblogged this on Myths of the Mirror and commented:
    I live in Oregon – only the lastest US state to face mass murder at the hands of a gunman, our 2nd school shooting spree this year. This post eloquently wraps up my frustration and anger, and though I try to refrain from going political on my blog, this is important. Here it is. That my beautiful country cares more about guns than even one child’s life outrages me. Over 30,000 Americans die from firearms every year. That’s a 9/11 attack every month, month after month after month.

    Liked by 5 people

    • m says:

      I hope the day comes soon that enough people are outraged that we turn our resources toward making sure “these things” don’t happen here. I’m a Colorado girl (originally) and I’ve spent almost 16.5 years now thinking, “didn’t we learn anything from Columbine?” Day after day our children die and we do nothing but drill them on how to die quietly.

      Liked by 3 people

    • To us Europeans, the common American argument that guns are necessary to support democracy is just incomprehensible. A lesson supposedly learned when the US threw the Brits into the sea. Do Britons live in tyranny and are just unaware of it? Perhaps.

      But the fact remains: the UK had 0.23 gun-related deaths (per 100,000 citizens), when the US had 10.64 – or 46 times more…

      (source: http://www.vox.com/2015/10/3/9443917/united-states-gun-death-europe)

      Liked by 4 people

      • m says:

        Ironically our 2nd Amendment protecting gun rights is a direct hold-over from the Revolutionary War. We’re still living in 1776 here and worrying that “the government” is going to tax our tea and take our guns. We still haven’t realized that WE are our government and we can opt to put down our weapons and quit shooting each other and our children. 😦

        Liked by 3 people

        • It’s not ironic; it’s the basis of the NRA’s arguments! 🙂

          The counter-argument being that we’re not talking about a well-regulated militia nowadays, as the armed forces and the National Guard play that role.

          Liked by 1 person

          • m says:

            No, it’s worse than that, the argument is that we may need to fight our own military and police forces if we don’t like what our government does. The whole idea is that armed citizens are supposed to be the force that keeps government in-line. Of course, that argument is null and void in a world of atomic bombs and long-range missiles, but convincing the gun-rights group of that is impossible. American education is so terrible that we have no idea why we have a constitution or what the intent and purpose of it is. Free speech has come to mean not the right to political dissent but the right to loudly and rudely voice any random opinion as truth and the right to be armed has come to mean not the right to over-throw tyranny but the right to shoot anything that moves. 😥

            Liked by 2 people

          • Sigh…

            The basis of the state is an exclusivity of the use of force. This is hardly a novel idea. In Greek mythology, the State and Violence (Kratos and Bia) were represented as siblings. Indeed, the very word Kratos means strength.

            Incidentally, Kratos had two more siblings; Nike (victory), and Zelus (zeal).

            Liked by 1 person

          • m says:

            The American idea of the state is more along the lines of the use of superior force, hence the constant need for expensive weapons research and arms races. The strategy can be seen in both domestic and foreign policy. Every time either citizens or other nations access more powerful weapons police and US military weapons increase proportionally. One of the primary uses of our national guards is quelling civil unrest in the form of non-violent protest. It’s quite clear that the 2nd amendment is a complete sham yet the ideology of it is great for free-market profit at the expense of human lives.

            Liked by 2 people

  4. philipparees says:

    Reblogged this on philipparees and commented:
    Needs shouting. Is legitimately shouted. The insanity of preserving the gun toting is beyond belief!

    Liked by 4 people

  5. philipparees says:

    I reblogged, slightly feeling a kind of impotence, but with nothing else I could do.

    Liked by 2 people

    • m says:

      I feel tiny in the face of such endless violence. Writing is what I can do, for now, and so this is my little contribution. Thank you for sharing my words.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Maureen says:

    I’m with you there…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I am constantly horrified at the senseless violence, and at the lack of action to control the proliferation of firearms in your country.
    I know there are many who want gun control, but it appears too many politicians are in the pockets of the NRA & the weapons manufacturers.
    It angers and frustrates me, in my country that has quite strong gun laws, and I can only imagine how much more you are affected by the constant fear of further massacres.
    You are quite within your rights to express in public how you feel. My heart goes out to you and to those who fight for sanity in an insane world.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Reblogged this on Ann Marquette and commented:
    This is painful to read, and so sad that so many feel the same way as “m” yet can’t bring ourselves to put it into our own words. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It seems to me Americans are developing a “war attitude.” This is no doubt the way people in a war zone react. That seems to point to the fact that America has in point-of-fact become a type of war zone. People in war zones react the way you described. They take shelter when they have to, then go on with their lives. I read that people during the London blitz in WWII sometimes didn’t even bother to go to a shelter, because they became so used to the bombings. They took their chances in their homes or had their own shelters in the backyard. I don’t know if even this is going to swing people away from their entrenched attitudes reinforced by groups like the NRA.

    Liked by 1 person

    • m says:

      We are completely desensitized to violence, totally numbed and even find it humorous when people hurt. I, personally, can sleep through SWAT stand-offs, gun-fire, and 2 3/4″ aerial shell fireworks outside the bedroom window. The “war attitude” is nothing new, we’re just finally talking about it with enough voices we are heard. Thank you for stopping by over here.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: Verbal Violence | the liminal life of m

  11. I recollect all too well the tragedy that unfolded here in Dunblane in 1996. We were dumbstruck as a nation. I cannot begin to imagine what it must be like to have that occur with such regularity. We, outside of the US, do shake our heads in disbelief that no meaningful measures ever seem to be taken in the face of such ongoing gun violence.
    As a mother and as a school teacher it’s abhorrent to me that children should be trained in how to deal with these scenarios. As you so rightly say, it should be abhorrent to everyone – one child’s death is too much.
    My husband has just informed me that another child has been shot by a thirteen year old who took umbrage at something said or done to him. If the weapons are around they will be used, either by those so inclined, by innocence, by those deranged or by stupidity.
    The political motivations involved in maintaining a gun culture need addressing, obviously.

    I’ve already chipped my tuppence worth in on a few other sites where people have raised this – citizens of the US. I hope you don’t mind me voicing an opinion when I’m not part of your country, and I do appreciate that the answer must come from its own people, but an outside perspective may have its uses.
    Once was enough here for tighter regulations all round in school security as well as gun licensing and background checks. I don’t know what the answer is when ‘the right to bear arms’ is upheld regardless of such tragic repercussions.
    I am so, so sorry that it’s even necessary for you to write this post and pray that the point when enough is enough is reached before too long.

    Liked by 1 person

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