We Are All Somebody

We have all these mass shootings. All the time. And everyone thinks they know why. Too many guns. Too little mental health funding. Too much religious extremism. Toxic masculinity. Terrorism. Violent video games. Bullying. Our culture of homophobia and racism. Too few thoughts and prayers (no wait a minute, that’s the one thing we have plenty of). Well I have no solution. I’m smart enough to know that I’m not smart enough to know why we have so many shootings all the time. My only thought when this happens is, “That boy’s mom didn’t hug him enough as a child. She didn’t make him laugh enough. She didn’t tell him enough jokes. She didn’t show him enough 1970’s Sesame Street. Because I don’t care how much childhood trauma you’re working through or still lashing out about as an adult, shooting up a public place would never even occur to kids who grew up on old school Sesame Street. Maybe his family went to the church whose preacher droned on every Sunday about how “homosexuals are going to hell,” and not the church whose choir joyfully sang, “red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in his sight.” Then I think of a bunch more reasons, and none of them are the right reason. Then I get frustrated and think to myself, “This isn’t my job! Why am I working so hard at thinking of reasons for this madness? It should be SOMEONE’S job, though. Why is this not a job? Why as a human race can we do so many amazing things, yet not make it some highly intelligent person’s sole purpose in life to figure out this mass shooting nonsense? Yeah it’s complex and could take decades of research, it just seems it should take priority over lots of other things. Like EVERY other thing.”

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