Tragedy Doesn’t Have to Beget Tragedy

Everyone is talking about it. No place is safe, not even here at my normally witty, smart ass blog which is normally about writing and enjoying life. I wanted to avoid it and let everyone get their media fix elsewhere, but I can’t.

My native state is Oklahoma. In the past few years I’ve been almost embarrassed to admit that. This is a state that claims to be Christian, conservative and the buckle of the bible belt. I grew up in Tulsa next to Oral Roberts University, Rhema Bible College and a church per citizen capita that rivaled the number of liquor stores.

My fellow Oklahomans are doing their best lately to turn Jesus into a gun-toting gynecologist. He wants to turn the other cheek while he’s reloading to cap the offender and needs to peek inside your womb and bring back vacation photos.  Right now, a couple of state legislators have proposed bills to arm teachers.

In light of the national hysteria, there might even be a good chance something like this goes further than simple talk. Frumpy ‘ol Mrs. Goitershins might need to find a concealed holster that fits under her mumu. The short shorts P.E. teacher Mr. Hangwright may need to tuck a few clips in his jock strap. Batty Petunia Potsbottom, the art teacher, might consider squirelling away a revolver in the glue stick drawer. How does this make anyone safer? A teachers job is to teach. It is a tough, grueling, thankless job.

In fact, all of you wanna be cowboys need to understand, you have a job too. Engineer, father, mother, gardener, store manager, whatever the hell you do in your everyday life. You are not and will never be trained, competent law enforcement. Tell me, in a dark theater, shots ring out and you stand along with twenty other people wielding guns so you can save the day, who the fuck do you shoot first? In a normal school day, dumb kid number 500 brings his Airsoft gun to school and you cap his ass before he can “kill everyone.”

Don’t get me wrong here. I hate the fact someone took a gun and murdered defenseless men, women, and children. The terror the survivors endured, the incomprehensible loss of the parents whose kids didn’t get on the bus that day, or any day, ever again. It is tragic. Pointless. Horrific.

But that doesn’t mean we slip into utter lunacy and hypocrisy. You want to be a state that claims conservative, Christian values? Turn the other cheek. Find how to love and help others through this tragedy instead of figuring out how to shoot the next deranged killer that our country is so damn good at producing. In fact, instead of funding some sort of “leave no perp alive” school initiative, why not sink that money into figuring out WHY we as a nation happen to hold the market on serial killers, spree killers and child gunmen. Why?

You want a gun in your home, fine. You want to concealed carry? Fine. But don’t assume that if everyone has a gun, it makes this a safer world. By that logic, we need to pass out nukes to Iran, North Korea, and the whole of the Middle East in order to “make the world safer”. Violence doesn’t beget peace. Jesus knew that, why don’t all my bible totin’ neighbors ?

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