So, here is the thing that scares me most about the recent shooting in South Carolina. It’s not the racist punk apparently intent on singlehandedly starting a second Civil War (because THAT went so well for his side the first time—try cracking a fricking history book some time, jackass). It’s not that this latest incident only reinforces the racial troubles seething just below and bursting up through the surface of American culture, whether we choose to acknowledge them or not (for an excellent commentary on this topic in regards to this specific event, Jon Stewart ’s recent monologue is pretty hard to beat: http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/kb2h42/charleston-church-shooting?xrs=synd_facebook_061915_tds_2 . And if you have a few moments, I encourage you to watch the 2 part interview with Malala that follows—your soul will be glad you did: http://thedailyshow.cc.com/guests/malala-yousafzai/bdl9ix/malala-yousafzai-pt–1?xrs=synd_facebook_061915_tds_41).
No, it’s not that at all.
I look at the faces of these nine African Americans gunned down in their church and think, what a waste of innocent lives. And what really scares me is this: no matter how tragic I find this event, there is a part of me that has grown disturbingly numb. There is a part of my mind, of my heart, that simply cannot process it any more. Because I know that this is not some isolated incident—some gut wrenching story that will be one of those life defining moments, like the Challenger explosion or the Kennedy assassination.
Now, it seems, we have fallen into a perpetual state of mourning. Why bother raising the flags to full staff at all? Because somewhere, sometime soon, it is going to happen again. And again. And again. And again. To people of different races and religions and ages. And no matter how much my metaphorical heart bleeds, it does not stop the actual bloodshed.
Eternal optimist though I am, I am coming to believe that there is truly no horror great enough to cause the seismic shift needed to make a change.
We shoot up a high school. We shoot up a movie theatre. A meet and greet with a politician in a grocery store parking lot. A college campus. A school full of elementary children. A place of worship. And on and on. There seems to be no act so utterly vile that will cause us to take a step back and re-examine our priorities as a society.
While some try to fight the good fight, so many of our leaders sit back and hem and haw, making excuses, pointing fingers, and tell us again about why the Second Amendment cannot be hampered in ANY way by ANY means at ANY time.
And I say: BULLSHIT.
If you’d like to hear a great (amusing, offensive) commentary on why just about every NRA argument regarding guns is utter bullshit, I invite you to watch this entertaining NSFW video from Australian stand up comic Jim Jefferies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jl–YVnni0I&sns=fb .
Watch it all the way to the end. I could not possibly say it any better than this. Watch it with an open mind and tell me you can’t see the bullshit, too. Let’s call it, shall we?