God, Guns, Laws, and Social Media

It wasn’t the typical kind of conversation you’d expect in a convenience store. It started with the still raw anger and confusion over the recent school shooting elsewhere in our state. It’s not like we’re one of those states where things like that just happen every so often, so we were still processing what it means to us ordinary everyday folk. The people involved in the conversation were young and old, men and women, believers and unbelievers.

Some just couldn’t understand why anybody would need an AR-15 or bump stock.

“A kid just shouldn’t be able to squeeze a trigger and fire off dozens of rounds in an instant.”

Others felt that …

“It starts at home, you teach your kids from as early on as possible that guns are not toys.”

You lock up your guns tighter than Fort Knox; a kid just shouldn’t be able to get access to guns.”

A younger guy pointed out:

I blame social media. These kids are relentless online and there’s just no escape from it. Not like how it was in the old days where you left school at school – it didn’t haunt you day and night when you’re at home.”

But the statement that got the most agreement was:

People just don’t believe in God anymore.”

God. Guns. Laws. Social Media. How I would have loved to have everyone keep on talking about it – hash something out. Figure out what we’re going to do to make sure it never happens again. But if anything, having eavesdropped on all that – it occurs to me that there’s no shortage of confusion. You can’t make everyone believe in God. you can’t ban all young people off social media. (They’ll just create profiles with fake ages so they can participate on them anyway, just as the older millenials had done before them.) You can’t ensure every household teaches about gun safety to their kids the same way – or the right way. And it seems that laws themselves are not capable of ensuring the best outcome given the impossibility of setting them in motion in the first place because of the efforts of the lobbying groups.

Still, I was proud of my middle of nowhere town. At least for a few minutes we were really listening to each other. I know; in a week it’ll be back to the same old, same old – but for now, it made me thing that if we could do this much – then we just might be able to make a difference … but really, it does start with listening. A grandmother came across her grandson’s journal and foiled a potential school shooting because she was listening – and paying attention. Maybe if we all learned how to listen to others who are crying out for help, and learned how to stand up beside them so that they didn’t feel that they had to stand behind a gun to be heard then we could make some real change that makes a real difference and really saves lives.

 

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5 thoughts on “God, Guns, Laws, and Social Media

  1. Pingback: God, Guns, Laws, and Social Media — TheUnmaskedAvenger | heroicallybadwriter

  2. What do I think? I’m 71 years old. I’ve been around, been involved, heard things, seen things, experienced things. I think it’s time to take the wizard’s advice and “forget everything you know, or everything you think you know…” (quote from the movie Willow). We need magic. Real magic. Something so powerful, it can change the world. So I wake up mornings and I think, compassion. I talk compassion, act compassion, teach and explain compassion. I go to bed with compassion. No one understands this powerful mind-changing magic; they never have. So they will continue to be totally confused about how to resolve their social problems and I will continue to demonstrate the magic. It changes me and that has to be good enough.

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    • I like the movie Willow. I know of one individual who is big on compassion, this is how he put it:

      “From my own limited experience I have found that the greatest degree of inner tranquility comes from the development of love and compassion.

      The more we care for the happiness of others, the greater our own sense of well-being becomes. Cultivating a close, warm-hearted feeling for others automatically puts the mind at ease. This helps remove whatever fears or insecurities we may have and gives us the strength to cope with any obstacles we encounter. It is the ultimate source of success in life.” – Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama and leader of Tibetan Buddhism.

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      • Compassion eliminates fear and that’s a big one. If one is compassionate then it doesn’t really matter what goes on all around. Compassion is practised anywhere, from the penthouse to the death camp (though it’s not as likely to be found in the penthouse, not its favourite haunt) and it makes no records of wrongs seeing as only the truly detached individuals can practise it. Compassion won’t make one rich in money but again, no compassionate person ever lacks necessities. Compassion is a chameleon, matching its surroundings. If the surroundings are surviving, the compassionate survives; if they are dying, the compassionate dies in the best of company. Blessed are the compassionate for they are alive.

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...Anyway, that's just how I feel about it ... What do you think?

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