By Tony Farkas
As a parent, one with school-aged children, the news from Uvalde is gut-wrenching in more ways than one.
Children should be loved, and cherished, and face the best things the world has to offer, and should not have to face such horrors as a homicidal rampage.
This one hits much too close for comfort as well. As terrible as it is, leaping to conclusions and tossing blame around will not now nor has it ever.
A very good friend of mine was interviewing an editor candidate for his newspaper, who turned down the job so his children could remain in the Uvalde school system. He lost his child.
His point is that we’re the smartest nation on the planet, so we should be able to find a solution.
But not as things stand.
During a briefing by law enforcement officials, which included Gov. Greg Abbott, Democratic candidate for governor Beto O’Rourke storms in and laying the blame for the shooting at Abbott’s feet.
Abbott pulled no triggers, nor was even in the area. It is not Abbott’s fault.
Media pundits of most stripes, liberal lawmakers across the board, all began the expected call for gun control. Given that mass shootings have been occurring with more frequency regardless of whether laws exist or not, this doesn’t seem like the proper path.
It is not the gun’s fault.
I’ve seen arguments that the creation of gun-free zones and the rise in mass school shootings. I’ve also seen calls for legislation to arm teachers, or to ensure that all schools have police presence, or single-entry points with metal detectors, or a host of other things that are expected to end this.
It’s not the fault of the law or laws.
Former President Barack Obama built an equivalence between the shooting in Uvalde and the death of George Floyd, who died while being arrested.
It’s not the fault of the police.
The ultimate fault lies with the perpetrator, the person or persons who made the decision to be evil, to take up arms and kill. Motives aside, there was a decision made.
I saw a video recently where a man on a subway train tormented other passengers, and even assaulted and took one as a hostage, and no one in the car attempted to intervene. It was described as another example of the “slow extinction of the values necessary for the proper functioning of a civilized society.” (h/t Gad Saad).
There is credible evidence that there needs to be a stronger attention paid to mental health issues and intervention. Seems like something worth exploring, anyway.
I agree with my friend that we’re a very, very smart country. One of the smartest things we can do is to stop pointing fingers and start talking with each other.
There has to be some way, some connection, something to create or find that will start all of us, perpetrator, potential perpetrator or victim, to heal, to step back from the brink of a heinous act that puts out ripples of evil, ever growing.
Some way to convince us that this barbarity only makes it worse.
Some way to reach out a hand, one not holding a weapon. This only will happen together, not apart.