No attempt at humor today

No attempt at humor today. I can’t get those school kids off my mind. Six and seven year olds! Can you imagine the laughter and joy that lay ahead of them? Can you imagine a more innocent group? I think of touchdowns not scored. Proms not attended. Hugs forever snuffed out.

I love young people ten hundred per cent more than I do old folks. I enjoy the laughter, the spontaneity and the wide openness of their little eyes. I like that they don’t complain or make excuses. I like that they don’t step gingerly around the mud puddle, they jump right in with both feet. If you “make a face” at them” they don’t get mad or think you are an idiot—they “make a face” right back at you!   

It is incomprehensible what happened at Newtown, Connecticut. And I’m mad and my heart hurts and I’m lost as all get out here to understand how we could reach such a place in our society.

I thought we lived in the home of the brave and the land of the free. When did “things” get so far off track? Did it start with Halloween? Remember when you could go trick or treating without your mom? Nobody was going to harm a group of little kids walking up and down the streets collecting candy. Cars stopped a half a block away to let them pass. Porch lights were on all over town to light the way. There was no danger of a razor blade in the Baby Ruth or arsenic in the Milk Duds.

Now, for Halloween, we rope off a section down town and have a “controlled” candy hunt. It’s safe and I appreciate that. But isn’t it also a statement about where we are in this country today?

Maybe it started with “Star Wars” where we learned there was a dark side. Or “Terminator II” where there was a shooting and killing and mass mayhem in near ’bout every scene. Or those dark cults where they throw chicken bones about and have blood sacrifices. Or maybe it started when that lady in North Carolina ran her car off into the pond…..with her children in it!        

Somewhere along the line, human life stopped being as valuable as I was raised to believe it to be. Whatever happened to “red and yellow, black and white; they are precious in His sight”? We learned to share early in life. We learned that no one gets their way all the time. And we learned to respect each other’s rights, both property and self.

I have no clue what “life imitating art” means. But I think it has something to do with we see it or hear about it on some media form and we go home and try it. Leon saw Tarzan jump off that bridge at the Park Theatre and so he went down to Paris Landing the very next day and jumped off that high bridge over the Tennessee River. He liked to have drowned. I have told that story before trying to be funny. I’m thinking it is not so funny today. If we are producing movies, videos, games or instant replays that depict, or ye gads, GLORIFY mass shootings, bombings, pillaging and looting……we ought to take a second look at those things.

I’ve leaned more about assault rifles in the past weeks than I ever cared to. I own a gun or two. I haven’t seen either one of them in years. I think the rifle that belonged to my grandfather is in the closet and the Remington 22 is under the bed maybe. I haven’t fired a gun in twenty years. I am not anti gun; I just don’t have any interest in them. We can do away with every gun (except granddaddy’s) and that would be alright with me. But somehow, in my heart, I don’t believe these nightmare attacks are the gun’s fault. It goes way deeper than that.

I do find it a bit ironic that some of the most out spoken proponents for gun control are also just as out spoken for abortion rights.  

I don’t believe our society is sick. I believe we have some sick people in our society. And listen closely here, we must all except some of the blame for the way things are in America today. Maybe we should have spoken up more, or at least questioned, some of the violent movies, videos and television shows. We should demand that media of all shapes, forms, fashion and kinds spend their air time glorifying family life, presenting decent rules for living and simple civilities among human beings.

I stand as guilty as anyone. I’ve wasted a lot of time and ink writing about Billy Bob and Charlene when I could have used this space to enlighten, or at least, made an attempt to wake us up a little to the evils that have befallen us slowly over the years. 

We could certainly explore the mental health issues a little more. But let’s not use “unstable” as an excuse to commit horrendous acts of violence. Is there a cause and effect that is apparent here? If we think as a nation happy, good thoughts will we get the desired results? If we shoot, pillage, loot and steal…….

I have a seven year old grandson. He is a first grader. If I thought it would help, I’d pull that Remington out from under the bed and follow him every where he goes. But that is not feasible….or even sensible. I’m trusting lots of folks to help me raise little Luke safely and soundly.

We didn’t do that for Newtown. 

Let’s wise up America.