My heart and my thoughts go out to every family, friend, and acquaintance who have lost a loved one to violence.
I notice a lot of people react on social media to current events that play out on an all-too-often basis regarding gun violence as it pertains to the United States as a country, whether it be at a high school, a grocery store, a gas company, or a post office. The setting is not of major importance beyond the humanistic view of the act and its consequences.
Here is where I stand: it has nothing to do with weapons.
It is a human issue.
We are a troubled species. We are troubled because there is a fine balance between reason, and emotion.
A songwriter whose work I admire, likens this chemical struggle inside our brains, to a seesaw. On one end of this seesaw is our logic, and on the other is our emotion. In order for sound judgment to be made by an individual, one must be able to keep this balance at an equilibrium.
At vast majority, this very simple idea is another thing all together to place into practice as a human being. We live our lives, and hopefully, we all arrive at this notion at as young an age as possible. I will be 39 this year, and I still feel this struggle, often. However, I know that I have grown well beyond my appreciation of this notion, compared to, let's say, the age of 20. It has been hard work and rumination on my part.
Rather than continue to discuss this issue as it pertains to guns, I would like to instead, pose a thought experiment: what if the United States were to ban guns entirely?
Before continuing, I would like to state that I have never shot a gun in my life, however, I do see the need to have this right maintained within the United States Constitution. There was sound judgement behind this decision in the 1700's. It is a safeguard to maintain the republic in which we all live, by the average individual, outside of military; essentially it allows for people to stand up for themselves should our government fail in its duties to uphold and protect citizens in the fashion it was originally intended. Please note that I use the word republic, as it is the most accurate term to use for this oligarchy we currently reside in if you are a United States citizen—I am afraid democracy is not quite what we have here in America. I am eager for democracy, but we must work towards that, together.
Throwing this previous paragraph aside, guns are banned in the United States. Perhaps, the American population rejoices at this notion. We have years of peace from the dangers of firearms being brought into public spaces to reenact revenge, or to project fear and hate on innocent bystanders. Yet, one day a begrudged student at a junior high packs a homemade pipe bomb into a backpack. He leaves all of his books and folders at home. He leaves his iPad on his desk. He replaces his tools for logic with an explosive device, and leaves for school.
He places his backpack in a public location for maximum damage: the school office.
Does this sound far fetched? It's not.
It happened at my junior high, and luckily, the backpack was found before it could be detonated.
We live in a world where passenger planes have been used as weapons.
What we should be asking is what the motivation is behind harming another person—and that is a deep and dark question. It has many facets and would take much study to arrive at a seemingly good answer as it pertains to each unique event. But, perhaps that is of a far more sound judgement, if we truly want to advance as a species who loves each other.
Reach out for help when you need it. Be there for a total stranger. Try loving unconditionally. Do things for others expecting nothing in return. Communicate. Just love and be as humanistic as possible. Be the best damn version of yourself as you can be. Be kind, always.
If you want to see change, start with yourself. I am trying my best to, everyday.