With words of course, because this would be the moment to demonstrate how the pen is mightier than the sword, rational discourse trumps irrational shrieeeking and internet activism might triumph over guns.
There have been many, many admirable and gut-wrenching pieces written in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook School massacre. Blithering glurge has also been produced, typically by those taken with a well-calculated Munchausen by proxy-like blog post.
This one may be my favourite, as it encapsulates the forces at play in the US.
The gun is our Moloch. We sacrifice children to him daily—sometimes, as at Sandy Hook, by directly throwing them into the fire-hose of bullets from our protected private killing machines, sometimes by blighting our children’s lives by the death of a parent, a schoolmate, a teacher, a protector. Sometimes this is done by mass killings (eight this year), sometimes by private offerings to the god (thousands this year).Armed with words, compassionate and strong words.
The gun is not a mere tool, a bit of technology, a political issue, a point of debate. It is an object of reverence. Devotion to it precludes interruption with the sacrifices it entails. Like most gods, it does what it will, and cannot be questioned. Its acolytes think it is capable only of good things. It guarantees life and safety and freedom. It even guarantees law. Law grows from it. Then how can law question it?
Its power to do good is matched by its incapacity to do anything wrong. It cannot kill. Thwarting the god is what kills. If it seems to kill, that is only because the god’s bottomless appetite for death has not been adequately fed. The answer to problems caused by guns is more guns, millions of guns, guns everywhere, carried openly, carried secretly, in bars, in churches, in offices, in government buildings. Only the lack of guns can be a curse, not their beneficent omnipresence.
Adoration of Moloch permeates the country, imposing a hushed silence as he works his will. One cannot question his rites, even as the blood is gushing through the idol’s teeth. The White House spokesman invokes the silence of traditional in religious ceremony. “It is not the time” to question Moloch. No time is right for showing disrespect for Moloch.
There are sadly though, gun-fetishizing idiots in the US who demand that teachers be armed with weapons, to stop any potential attacks, oh no, wait - to *defend*. That's their buzz-word, their holy mantra.
This kind of exchange is unfortunately quite typical of that mentality.
The assumption that any armed person can stop someone equipped bent upon carnage with assault weapons is mind-boggling. Military and police teams train daily, for months and years, in order to develop the finely calibrated responses required to deal with this type of volatile - and deadly - situation.
Aaron is so convinced that "the lack of guns can be a curse, not their beneficent omnipresence" that he can't see the training and the mindset required for this role is antithetical to what teachers do. He would prefer that teachers devote their extra time to developing those specific skills deployed by SWAT personnel, instead of coaching, mentoring, nurturing, guiding children?
And then Wayne provides a link to this. Oh glorious USA, land of opportunities, profits and ever-increasing deaths by gunfire.
Reading the comments that follow Garry Wills' piece is educational - and disheartening. Yes, there are idiots but some people do still cherish the hope that their murderous US gun culture can - and will - shift gears.