When I was a teenager, the idea that school was a dangerous place to be was foreign to me. No one back then could have predicted the epidemic that has so tragically fallen upon our schools or society as a whole. It seems that nearly monthly there is another news story covering the horrific details of senseless violence.
With every headline comes weeks of discussion over the need to control citizens’ accessibility to guns. Over and over, the blame for these acts is placed on the weapons the individuals choose to use to commit them. I understand that need for blame. In this day of political correctness and subjective morality, we are constantly told to not blame the person for the way they live their lives. No one wants to place the blame on the actual shooter, whether youth or adult. There has to be a more concrete target for blame.
Now I will preference my opinion with this. I am in full agreement that there are a few guns out there that I can see no possible reason for an average citizen to possess. However, the laws that seem to be aimed at regulating those guns can easily be manipulated to eventually remove our right to bear sensible arms entirely. But that is another topic for another time. Right now, I want to share my belief that the problem with the rampage of violence in our society has as much to do with guns as drunk driving has to do with cars. The fault lies beyond the weapon of choice.
Guns have been easily accessible since the forming of our country. In fact, without the access to guns and ammunition, we would probably still be speaking with a British accent. However, this senseless, widespread violence in our society is new, very new, only a couple decades old. So my question is this... What’s changed? Ultimately, it’s our society that has changed. In the last couple decades, there has been a massive decline in morality as a whole and the general acceptance of “anything goes” and “you are the final authority”. This lacking of a moral compass has sent schools, families, children, politics, and everything else flarring around to find solid footing. And in this chaos, so much of what makes us good humans has been lost. From what I can see, there are three main elements that have changed in our society, which has easily led to this chronic problem with mass murder.
In order to change the direction of this generation away from senseless violence we must change as a whole. Gun control will not solve the problems that lie in the heart of this wayward generation. To bring that change we must.....
1. Teach them that life, all life, is valuable, even at it’s most frail, dependent, sickly, and young stages. No matter what... life is good!
2. Show them that marriage is a safe and satisfying institution where the love of two people produce children who are fully loved and cared for.
3. Inspire them to search for a holier and eternal purpose in life, a life that lives on beyond death.
These are foundational truths that our young country held as reality and accepted as the norm. Yet all three have been destroyed in the last few decades. We are now raising a generation of people who feel hopeless, lost, and unvalued.
The problem is not with gun control. The problem is with despair.
Our earth is dying.
The world is at war.
Our health is constantly threatened by mutant viruses.
No one can be trusted.
No one really cares.
Nothing really matters.
The only way to change that outlook is to change the way this generation sees us caring.
Caring can not include killing.
Caring can not include self gain.
Caring can not include pain.
They must witness our heroic love for all humanity. They must see us helping others; rather than raising up ourselves. They must be shown faith, faith in God, faith in each other, and faith in hope.
For me, I teach my children that God deeply loves them and has a wonderful purpose for their lives. I teach them that all humanity is valuable and lovable. I teach them that there is an ultimate truth in which exists a definite right and a definite wrong.
For me, I have shown my children that my husband and I are a united front and an example of great love and respect. I have shown my children that no matter what mistakes they make, we will always be there for them. I have shown my children that throughout the difficulties of life, my faith in God will remain the source of my internal strength.
And for me, I expect my children to leave my shelter being the best product of my love that this messy, flawed, and worn out woman can create. They will have their own story to write and path to trod. I am certain it will involve mistakes and sufferings. Yet, I am confident they will be victorious because I have given them all I can and I have entrusted them to the God who created them.
Just imagine for a moment. Imagine schools filled with students who go home to loving families, parents who teach them right and wrong, dinners eaten together, prayers prayed in the evenings and total trust that tomorrow will be the same. You would be able to line the hallways of those schools with free guns and you would not have a single incident like the ones we see monthly on the news. See, the problem is not in the steel,it’s in the heart.
So... instead of focusing on the easy out, let us dig deeper and examine how it is that we as a society has fallen so low. Our children are killing each other. The fault lies with us.
February 16, 2016
*photo credit: dollarphotoclub.com