A lot of people today are asking questions.
“How could this happen?”
Today, though, I’m not in the mood to ask questions. Because I know why mass shootings happen in America, and it hasn’t got a damned thing to do with God
But everything to do with us.
Do you want to know why I’m not asking questions today?
There are lots of things you can blame God for. Guns is not one of them.
Because I asked questions after the last half-dozen massacres with guns.
Like we all did.
It is shocking and disturbing and horrifying that so many young boys and girls were murdered in Connecticut. No less so than the 12 killed in Aurora, Colo. No less so than the seven killed in Oak Creek, Wis. No less than the 12 killed in Columbine. No less than the 32 at Virginia Tech.
Ask it if you must but ask this one, too.
Where were we in all this?
Because I will tell you where the NRA and gun lobbies were. They were on Capitol Hill, flush with money, lobbying, pushing for stand your ground laws, making sure that almost anyone could purchase a gun, even if they used it to end dozens of barely lived lives in a handful o minutes with a fistful of bullets.
Today, we are all weeping, grieving, watching television and hugging our children. These are all well and good. Do these. And do these however helps you grieve. But don’t think the gun lobbies are doing the same thing. They are readying their armies of lobbyists to make it politically impossible to make our country safer, more secure and less violent. They are trying to add the mass murder of children to part of our inalienable Second Amendment rights.
This isn’t a Second Amendment issue. Killing children isn’t part of the well-regulated milita the Bill of Rights envisioned. I’m convinced of it. Killing scores of people in a theater, in a place of worship, at a workplace is not essential to the security of a Free State, as the Bill of Rights envisioned. Guns, particularly today do not bring safety and security as the Bill of Rights envisioned.
Rather, they bring the opposite: terror, destruction and mass violence.
Will getting rid of the guns end violence? No. But it can’t help but mitigate it.
Will banning assault rifles solve our gun violence problems? No. But it is a crucial piece to keep our citizens safe, our children safe, our country safe.
See, because that feeling we all have right now? That’s not just the feeling of sorrow or grief. That is the feeling of being terrorized. Of being afraid to let your children attend school, play outside, be innocent and young.
Today, I’m all for a war on terrorism. Control the guns. Ban assault rifles. Terrorism is terrorism is terrorism.
Today, I hear people asking, “How long, O Lord? How long?” It is a question of Advent.
Today, I suggest we ask a different question. “How long, O people of God? How long?”
Today, I am desperate enough to hope.
Today, let us begin to be the answer to our own prayers.