Gun violence is all around. Today another shooting in front of the Empire State building. And last night a particularly bloody night in Chicago. This against the backdrop of The Aurora shooting and the murders at the Sikh Temple in Wisconsin. Everyone says you can’t fight the NRA, The giant lobby of the gun owners and manufacturers in this country. But the time has come for common sense. I do not think that all guns have to go away. People do hunt and most people who shoot for sport are responsible gun owners. But I think it time for a serious conversation about handguns, assault weapons. And ordering ammunition over the internet. Who will be brave enough to have that conversation?
At the core of all this violence is an anger and rage and fear that fuels such gun violence. Retaliation for losing a job shows the desperation in our society and the real state of our economic failures as a nation. But as long as we can not talk and think together about poverty in this country as well as gun violence we will continue to see horrible killings and shootings like today’s in New York City. When our society is stretched to the limits, when there is no mental health safety net because all our money is being siphoned off into a hopeless war in Afghanistan and Grover Norquist strangles conversation about taxation, the angst among those who are a paycheck away from being destitute will rise. Who will be brave enough to begin a serious conversation about these issues and the interlocking and overlapping concerns that are here?
May those who have died rest in peace and those who are wounded heal speedily and quickly.