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I Don't Understand

I am so saddened by the recent shooting in #uvalde. There's just so much I don't understand.

I don't understand how it can be legal for an 18 year old (or any year old frankly) to buy a weapon that can do that much damage so quickly.

I cannot comprehend why a weapon like that would need to be owned by a civilian.

I don't understand why any person would go to an elementary school and shoot up a classroom full of children.

I don't understand why our country cares more about protecting gun owners than children.

I don't understand why anyone thinks arming our teachers will prevent situations like this. That is so illogical I can't even put together words to argue against it.

I don't understand how our politicians think it is perfectly reasonable to teach children what to do in case of an active shooter, but think it is unreasonable to create stricter gun policies.

I don't understand how those parents are supposed to go on.

I don't understand how that community is supposed to heal.

I don't understand how the survivors - specifically the ones in that classroom - will ever be able to recover.

I don't understand. And it breaks my heart.

The only ones I do understand are the police officers that were reluctant to run in with a shooter wielding a weapon like that. But I am not a trained professional.

It must have been terrifying. I get it. I would have pissed my pants and vomited a dozen times over but I would have died trying to get to those babies.

Especially if one of them was mine.

Please understand I am not judging the parents that stood on the sidelines, gripped with fear and helplessness. I understand them too. And honestly who's to say I wouldn't have been one of them? Paralyzed with fear.

If you've ever seen me around a spider, that seems the most likely outcome. But I can tell you that if a black widow or brown recluse was inching toward my babies, I would stomp on that fucker in barefeet.

I'm not advocating to take away anyone's guns. Although I don't personally own one and never want to, I believe in the right to own one. Or a dozen. You do you.

But why do you need a semi-automatic or automatic weapon to go hunting?

The answer is, you don't.

I also don't think that everyone that owns a weapon like that is likely to go on a killing rampage. So I'm not saying that either.

But there has to be some kind of gun reform. How can we continue to re-elect politicians that are so blatantly in the NRAs back pocket? How did we get to a point where humanity plays second fiddle to deep pockets?

I'm never going to understand why we have become such a divided nation. I have sincerely tried to talk to those with opposing points of view. And I do know some reasonable Republicans that are willing to talk about this and the majority land on the same side.

It's the Trump supporters and their ilk that get defensive when I try to have a simple discussion. I'm trying not to judge. I'm sincerely trying to grasp what it is that prevents them from seeing reason. I've known people that I considered to be kind, humane people fall for the Trump/tea party rhetoric. And when I try to approach that divide, I am inevitably told "I don't need to justify my views".

And they don't. But how are we ever going to fix this if we don't talk to each other, without it devolving into insults and name calling?

And I don't want to lump them all as crazy - because this includes some people I care about - and yet...I don't know what else to do.

I'm so afraid we are going to have a civil war and if we do, I think the crazies will win. Because they are the ones that are armed. And proud of it.

While we, the unarmed, are proud as well.

I still have hope. I think my boys and their generation and those that come after are likely to make important changes. Assuming they live long enough to achieve them.

You know why? Because of social media. Social media, the internet have made news more accessible. It's not so easy to bury your head in the sand if you don't like something. It's all around - it's nearly impossible to avoid. Even if you are one of those that doesn't partake in social media, the news is so pervasive as to be unavoidable.

Of course there is still the issue of bias. Anyone can post their opinion (obviously since you are reading this) - and it doesn't even have to be fact based. I'm sad that newspapers are a dying breed though I don't miss the newsprint on my fingers.

But my point is, I just think our kids are more aware. And they care. They are rightfully disillusioned, they have a hell of a mess to clean up. But eventually they will be the ones in charge and I just hope they never loose that sense of outrage, their humanity.

As long as they still have that, there is hope.

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