Words fail me. I am sickened, saddened, crushed by the devastating events in Newtown, CT on Friday December 14th. I cannot wrap my head around it. I’ve spent all weekend with a heavy heart trying to comprehend what happened. Those sweet children, those brave teachers, those devastated families. I simply cannot wrap my head around it.
When I first heard about the shooting, with tears in my eyes, I said aloud, “Not again”. As I read more details and learned that the victims were young children and their brave teachers I wept, what else could I do. Those kids are barely older than Maya. Who does something like that. How angry and sick do you have to be to enter an elementary school and open fire on sweet, innocent kids. What is wrong with our world that things like this happen and we can’t seem to stop them.
As well as being incredibly sad I am also very, very angry. These kinds of things cannot keep happening. What will it take for us to finally see that something is broken in our society, that something needs to change dramatically? Is this the breaking point? God I hope this is the breaking point. Will we finally realize we need to take a stand, that we need to force change to happen. We cannot sit back and idly let these kinds of things to continue to happen. We cannot sit back and let society move forward under the status quo. We have to stand up and be heard. We have to force those in power to make changes. We have to look within ourselves and make changes. Gun laws need to change. Mental healthcare access needs to get better, much better. We need to learn to love and respect one another.
Debate is no longer necessary, we are past the point of debate. Our current gun culture and the free and easy access to guns by any one and every one has to change. Gun regulation reform is absolutely necessary. More guns is not the answer. Arming teachers is not the answer. Banning unnecassary assault weapons, limiting the size of ammunition clips and making it much more difficult for a person to purchase and own a gun, those are the answers. Comprehensive change is a must. We need to take a stand and let our politicians know that the status quo is no longer acceptable.
In our society it is easier for a mentally ill individual to go out and buy a gun than it is for them to get help. That is unacceptable. We need to talk about mental illness and make people feel comfortable in seeking help. We need to open up access so that those who need help can get it. Dialogue is necessary. Reform is necessary.
But, even if gun laws are changed and access to mental healthcare is improved that is not enough. If we do not respect one another. If we do not encourage understanding and love for our fellow citizens we cannot expect things like this to stop happening. We need to look within our society and change the way we react and respond to each other.
26 families are without their loved ones this holiday season, without their loved ones forever. We owe it to those 20 beautiful children and those 6 incredibly brave teachers to change. We owe it to them to never forget what happened and to never let something like it happen again.
Sending much love, light and peace to the families affected by this horrific tragedy. I am taking a stand for you.