It was well over 90 degrees here over the weekend, so Saturday afternoon my wife and daughter and braved the traffic and headed to the beach. It was crowded; I think everyone in New Jersey had the same idea. But that’s fine. We had fun. Then, toward the end of the day, a young woman, early 20s, came running, frantic:
I think we are all speechless at the horrible tragedy in Texas. As an educator, I cannot imagine what these parents and teachers are going through. For some of these students, school was a place of comfort and safety. Now, they will have memories of a senseless shooting! Praying for these families!
There are absolutely no words at all that can be said of this shooting. I used to live in TX. Emotions are raw. 💟✝️💟
The whole thing makes me sick to my stomach. What do you say? What's to say? I left speechless. To your point, again, there will be no action - just inertia and inaction. When will change come? Who will protect these kids? I get sickened (again) thinking of all the random acts of violence (Buffalo, mass shootings, NYC subway). It's a dark place right now but even with that, nothing will change. I just watched the Steve Kerr interview before the basketball game. Emotional. His plea is right on.
As an aside … After reading the Fortune article on Juneteenth, it might seem more appropriate that maybe only Galveston TX has a reason to commemorate June 19. I don’t see this as an event that galvanized/affected the whole nation.
Mr. Murphy, IMHO the deadliest attack on children in this country is when the child is murdered before being born. I say this because I accept that the child is a child at conception. You may of course not agree and am sure myriads of your readers do not agree with this position. However, when I read there is a movement to include murdering the child after being born, I must contend the child is a child before as well as after being born. What is next? Murdering the older folks? We are all praying for the families involved and we do not blame the instrument used, nor the NRA.
The frustration!!! Senseless shootings, mentally unstable young men getting weapons so easily, then using them within a short period of time. I know of a family who has a troubled son who has been in love with guns for over a decade. They’re terrified, yet so far have stopped him from the purchase. But they’ve found out that talking to the police doesn’t help unless he’s committed a crime. Even his psychiatrist(s) say that he’s not a risk because he hasn’t committed a crime, just talks about doing things. So there’s no way to funnel these young men into something safer, no community or psychiatric path, no mentoring, nothing but wait until they do something wrong - - like murder someone. Fear and frustration. (Oh, he can’t go into the military due to seizures.). I then think if the Māori culture and how they as a community have used their culture to end their war making. Now there’s wisdom.
From today’s Washington Post:
Amanda Gorman, the poet who mesmerized the country at President Biden’s inauguration last year, tweeted her latest work Tuesday, just hours after a gunman massacred at least 19 children at a Texas elementary school.
“It takes a monster to kill children,” Gorman wrote — but doing nothing after repeatedly watching mass shootings like the one at Robb Elementary School “isn’t just insanity — it’s inhumanity.”
“The truth is, one nation under guns,” she added.
Schools scared to death.
The truth is, one education under desks,
Stooped low from bullets;
That plunge when we ask
Where our children
We were going to visit USA in June. Cancelled. As a Canadian neighbour looking on I am very concerned about a country where the Left is so pitted against the Right. The left won’t protect a child in the womb but must protect children elsewhere. And the Right want to protect the child in the womb but not so much elsewhere. I know oversimplified but to us looking on the contrasts are staggering and do not bode well for the USA. Just how many guns does America need? Just how many more need to die before it’s enough? The answer and the viability of America is truly blowing in the wind.
My heart breaks for the parents and siblings. Having lost one of my children numerous times, I know that clench around your heart. Luckily mine was momentary. Can't imagine having that for a lifetime. And for what?
Every Texas politician that has supported loose gun ownership laws is now complicit in the murder of 19 Texas children and so are those that voted for them!
I am sorry because I am going to sound cold hearted, but I stopped feeling sorry for the ongoing shootings in the USA. Those events and their innocent victims were completely avoidable with better regulations and a healthier culture/mindset. The "victim" attitude of USA citizens is no longer working for anybody. If the USA continues on this path, whatever happens to them is 100% on them.
Bill, you are a very skilled writer. Watching the news makes me feel intense anger that this $h1+ continues to happen in America. We have gone back to the days of the wild west. Reading your article this morning brought me to tears as I was feeling this tragedy from a parents perspective. Having been a public school teacher for 17 years, it makes me sick that children aren't safe anymore at school. That is the one place they should be the safest!
I am a teacher at a high risk school and I cry everytime I hear about one of these shootings. In my 26 years as a teacher I have had multiple children killed by guns, from preschoolers to seniors. I don't think about the possiblity anymore of this happening in my school, I can't. Teacher's often have to clarify when we are talking about our kids. I say either my personal children, or my classroom children. This has to end.
After returning from Vietnam, I and some of my fellow Marines were shocked that civilians could buy the same weapon that we had used in combat (without the fully automatic feature). We had learned in training that the weapon and its matching ammo had been specifically designed to kill people. And did it ever. Let’s be graphic - it seemed one shot anywhere in a body would blow a hole in flesh that did so much damage that the recipient/victim would die from the wound, itself, or from bleeding out. I was encouraged when the weapon was eventually banned during the Clinton administration (along with magazines able to hold more than 10 rounds) but discouraged that it was allowed to be sold 10 years later during the Bush administration (in 2004). Now of course, banning assault weapons would not stop all mass murders; but the fact that the US allows them and unlimited magazine holding capacity has created an environment unique to the US that encourages an “anything goes” mentality when it comes to weapons, all under the authority of an amendment that was aimed at getting slave-holding states to ratify the Constitution. I guess in some ways, the gun culture in our country is another unfortunate legacy feature of slavery.
Today I feel almost paralyzed by grief--lives cut short and families bereft. Chris Murphy of Connecticut is right--we need to act once this shock subsides, and not by having armed officers at schools, but by enacting stricter standards for the sale/transfer of weapons, and requiring background checks, registration and insurance for all who own firearms. We also need to address the systemic hate that exists, whether because of mental health issues, fear, or disinformation; it literally is killing our friends and neighbors.
I used to be unaware of the depth of anger of which I was capable. I am a therapist. I am supposed to be able to manage my emotions. But not anymore. I have had random people ask me, “do you even know a Democrat who is pro-gun?” What does THAT mean? I have had others ask “Don’t you think the 14 yo daughter of a GOP supporter can get an abortion after she was raped? Especially by a black/Hispanic/Muslim/Asian?” That is how dumbed down they have made all of us. I have watched many films about cults and this is how they work. People recover but only after the stimulus of fear is removed. Talking is not working. We all expect somebody else to do something. It is apparent they have all been paid for their silence. I used to work on Capital Hill. They are saying COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THINGS BEHIND CLOSED DOORS.
Stop voting for these political prostitutes. Start doing something for yourself. They only care about POWER and we keep giving it to them. They have broken this country and if we don’t work together, “they” will win.