Monday, September 16, 2013

Mass Killings in the United States Are Not Unexpected

There was a mass shooting in Washington Navy Yard today. Thirteen people, including one suspect, are dead. The president of the United States said about deceased: "They know the dangers of serving abroad, but today they faced the unimaginable violence that we wouldn't have expected here at home."

Seriously, Mr. President? Unimaginable and unexpected? I am not going to get into the pro-gun, anti-gun laws argument here. I don't have a solution that would be realistic enough in the given setting, and as much as I would love to be a dreamer and imagine the world living in peace, I am mostly a realist.

It's the terminology, and what it implies, that angers me. The United States of America has a problem. The problem is that certain people decide to take a weapon and start randomly killing others. To call mass killings "unimaginable" and "unexpected" is burying your head in the sand. Mass killings -- defined by the FBI as four or more victims, not including the killer -- have occurred across the U.S. at the rate of about one every two weeks since 2006.

I understand that the president can't say: "Oh shit, another one, huh?" in a press release, but maybe it's time to start calling things what they are. Mass shootings have become a part of our lives. Americans are split on what the best course of action to prevent them should be. I get all that. But please, stop implying that this is just a fluke that will pass on its own. It's time to admit that the emperor has no clothes.

2 comments:

  1. It sickens and saddens me that we must now admit our truth about these mass killings. They have become a part of our American life. Just like baseball and apple pie. I just don't understand Americas love affair with guns. Until we as a nation change our mind set, it will keep happening again and again. I think we are very close to saying "Oh shit, another one." Thanks for writing this, it takes courage to say what you are saying. I appreciate that.

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Karen! It's a very sad and tragic state of affairs, and to accept this as a new way of life is in my opinion a dangerous path to go.

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