Sometimes you sit down at the keyboard and rather than type your thoughts you just want to rest your head against it, and hope everything that is going on in the world, will just go away....
As a country, and as a culture, America struggles with how to react when things like this happen. Conservatives tend to circle their political wagons and claim Liberals, and anyone else who says tragedies like these should cause America to examine its relationship with guns, are “exploiting a tragedy for political gain.” While liberals claim the defence of completely unlimited gun rights by those on the Right, shows how “out of touch” conservatives are. While everyone else just tries to get through the day without wanting to cry, or scream or both.
Let me get this out of the way first. As far as the whole Gun issue goes.... I do not believe the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution allows Americans to have whatever kind of , and however many, guns as we want. The line in that often cited Amendment that many Americans like to forget is the first line of it;
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Trying to have any sort of national discourse on America’s cultural firearms fetish, is pretty much like trying to teach pigs to Juggle. All you are going to accomplish is one group gets frustrated and the other group gets annoyed. So if you disagree with me on the Gun issue, fine. But we both know you are wrong. So don't bother spewing your supposed love of the 2nd Amendment in the comment section on here. I won't read it, and I won't post it. Go back to forwarding your nut job chain letter emails claiming that the President Obama is "coming for your guns". Because I don't care.
Funny odd thing, life... How one brief encounter on a London Subway, can change all that.
Last night I was on the London Underground heading home after work, Thanks to the Olympics I have found the trains actually less crowded than usual. So oddly enough, I was able to find a seat on the Jubilee Line, while I read the London Evening Standard. I had just finished the article reporting on the shooting in Oak Creek, when I looked up and noticed two young Sikh men sitting directly across from me, reading the very same article. Their distinctive turbans and beards standing out in the crowd of weary evening commuters.
They appeared to me to be at most, in their late twenties. They both were looking at the newspaper one of them was holding, The expressions on their faces growing increasingly solemn as they read the account of the shooting. The older looking of the two, folded the paper and looked at the other and shook his head and said quietly “Americans think we are all Muslims. That’s why they shot them.” His companion nodded his head, and replied; “Not just Muslims, they shoot each other at the cinema too...”
Page, who was shot and killed by police during the attack, has not been identified as an Atheist, yet this sad, demented hate monger was first out of the gate to go on national television to say it was a lack of belief in God (his God specifically) that is partly to blame for the shooting.
I know habitual viewers of FOX News are going to have trouble understanding this, so I will type slowly. Try to understand this; God does not love America more than other nations. We are not God’s favourite kids. If you think that, you are a blashphemous moron. Pat Robertson is an un-American hate merchant who thinks America is better than other nations because of people like him. He could not be more wrong.
The success of the United States as a nation throughout our history has been a direct result of our DIVERSITY - E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one,) THAT is what makes America exceptional. Not some twisted notion that John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin, fought less for the idea that all people are created equal, and more for the right of every American to own an Uzi. Or the even crazier notion that, owning that Uzi is somehow pleasing to the Almighty, thus granting America special divine favor.
The people of Oak Creek Wisconsin are in my thoughts, and yes.... my prayers. Prayers that they will survive both this tragedy, and the idiocy that has followed it. It is the fact that there is a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin to begin with, and there will continue to be, even after this senseless tragedy; That is what makes America exceptional.