ache

My heart’s hurting for Newtown, for victims everywhere of gun violence, for people suffering with mental illness. I’ve been reading a lot since Friday night. Here are a few links to some smart, sobering, precious responses:

If Not Now, When? If Not Us, Who?

Insanity is Winning

How To Help

I Cry To You From The Depths, Lord.

And I have to end by saying this:  I feel nothing but rage towards people who place a higher value in guarding their personal gun ownership than in protecting our most vulnerable. I feel devastated by those who don’t think mental health is more worthy of funding than special interests. I feel disappointed in those who hate our President so very much that they’ll do anything to stop his efforts to make much needed and reasonable changes in our policies just because they hate him. I felt fury at people telling those who are grieving that this was somehow God’s will.

But I also felt loved by our President last night when he spoke at the inter-faith prayer service. I felt challenged by him to help work for changes to ensure these acts of violence end forever. I felt proud as hell of my high school principal who is now the first-selectwoman (like a mayor, essentially) of Newtown, and sad that this may define her place in history. I felt joy in our morning worship that both honored the grief of the present while remembering the meaning of Christmas.

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One thought on “ache

  1. It’s easier to get a gun than it is to get mental health care (or any health “care” for that matter).

    The cost/benefit ratio of guns is far too high.

    At 1:40 in this clip, a forensic psychiatrist describes how the media fans the flames, with the saturation coverage leading to more shootings. I’ll summarize it:

    If you don’t want to propagate more mass murders:
    – Don’t start the story with sirens blaring.
    – Don’t have photographs of the killer.
    – Don’t have 24/7 coverage.
    – Don’t make the bodycount the lead story.
    – Don’t make the killer an antihero.
    – Do localize the story to the affected community.
    – Do make it as boring as possible to other markets.

    Each of his points is punctuated with clips of news media doing exactly what he says don’t do, and sensationalizing things. It’s traditional for news reporting, but it’s social irresponsibility. Sadly, it’s what the market wants, if only because it’s what we’ve been led to expect.

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