Skip to main content

Nothing since 9/11 has affected so many Americans with so much grief and heartache. The horrific mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut reaches most of us -- Democrats and Republicans -- deep down and on a personal level; we can only imagine what the families of the victims are going through. Our hearts go out to them, through much sorrow and the shedding of many tears.

Personally, the tragedy has made me feel so helpless and I have cried my eyes out too many times to count. Children should never have to face such an awful ordeal.

The mass killing at Sandy Hook elementary school -- unlike other tragedies of this type -- revealed a common ground between all of us: it is our children -- do not hurt our children.

Because of the tragedy, the United States Congress is talking serious with each other and there seems to be something in the air, perhaps. Both Republicans and Democrats are discussing a renewal on an assault rifle ban that President Clinton put in place in 1994 and which Congress let expire in 2004. There is also talk about a requirement for background checks on all gun purchases, along with discussions about mental health funding; all good things in my books.

Then of course, we have been down this road before. We have watched as something Americans care about deeply, get bogged down in politics and misinformation and then nothing at all gets accomplished. Special interests steps in with their big dollars and their influence with lawmakers who they give those dollars to and before long, any worthwhile bill is either put down entirely or stalled into infinity.

This time it will be the NRA (National Rifle Association) at the top of those special interests, with lots of dollars and power, pushing to keep the status quo as far as gun control laws. The NRA has already piped in and as usual, their solution for gun violence is more guns. NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre in a statement, responded to the tragedy for the first time by saying:

“I call on Congress today to act immediately to appropriate whatever is necessary to put armed police officers in every single school in this nation,”

For one thing, it would cost our federal government a great deal of money to put an armed guard at every single school throughout our country, and especially during the current fiscal crisis.

For another, do we really want to turn our schools into armed fortresses? Should our children grow up in a culture that says they need to be afraid of everything?

I think we need to look deeper into our society as a whole and ask ourselves why people like Adam Lanza, the shooter who mowed down 20 innocent children at an elementary school before killing himself, has so much hate to commit such hideous acts . Is it because of violent video games and movies or is it because so much hate and prejudice still exist beneath the surface of our society and passed down through the generations?

What do we teach our children? Do we instill in them love, compassion and selflessness, or do we pass on our own prejudice and fears? So much of what we become, depends on the values given to us when we were young.

We must step forward into a more civilized society and lay down our fears, along with our guns. Our nation was not built on fear but of hope and a yearning for freedom. The principal and those teachers, who gave their lives, did not allow fear to guide their actions, but their love and duty to those children.

America has changed, how much can only be determined by what comes of the shared compassion we feel for the families of those kids. Any parent knows in their hearts that it could have been their child and that frightens them to the bone. It is that shared heart knowledge that has the power to make real change in our congress and bring forth comprehensive gun control laws. Perhaps this time it will be enough.

This is a republish from my website: Fidlerten Place

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site