Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tea and commentary

Before we begin today, I want to remind you I cannot leave comments on blogs with embedded comments.   Once again, simply scroll to the end of this post if you don't know what an embedded comment is or how to change your comments! 

Next, I want to point you to another Tea Tuesday participant, Pat of Artfully Ooglebloops, whose post referencing her daughter's giveaway is here.  Her daughter takes beautiful photos, so I know you will like her work.  She wants to add people to her Facebook page and is having a giveaway to prove it.  Since I'm not on Facebook, I thought this was something I could do to help.

For the past several days, I've been reading a lot of blogs while glue was drying on more of my Christmas houses.  Many of the people who I visit have mentioned the senseless taking of lives in Connecticut on Friday.  Many believe the world has changed, however, I see it as a continuation of the deaths in schools beginning with the first one I remember in Paducah, KY in 1997.  These students had been praying at the time of the shooting.

Next came Columbine.  This high school massacre occurred in 1999 and I remember seeing it on TV.  From there, I lost track of the carnage that was accompanied by chaos and panic during rampage killings in schools.  Four things I do remember though.

First, each shooter was labeled "troubled."  The shooter was deemed mentally disturbed in some way, either through voices from God, violent video games, or mental defect.

Second, each shooter had access to at least one, and often several guns, many of them legal, as well as a boatload of ammunition.

Third, each story involved a hero in some way or another, whether real or through witness distortion.

Fourth, after each incident, gun control was called for.

Friday's incident was no different.  There was a shooter.  A crazed shooter whose various mental issues were called into question and noted.  Second, there were several guns.  Third, there were heroes.  This time genuine, real, life-sacrificing heroes.  Fourth, news stories on every channel, even the most conservative channels, called for some form of gun control or change.

Although I believe gun ownership is my choice, like I believe in saving lives, being kind, helping others, hugging my cat, and doing my part in times of need, I also believe gun ownership requires responsibility, leadership, education, and good mental health.

Will the killings ever stop?  Will gun ownership be outlawed in the US?  Is this a rural versus urban debate?  Will we find a way to keep guns out of the hands of children and adults who are mentally ill?  Is there any way to change mental health laws in the US?  Only time will tell.

Since I don't often offer a commentary on my blog, I thought this was a great time to start a dialogue about this issue.  So, please enjoy a spot of tea with me today, visit Pat's daughter's Facebook page, and tell me what you think we Americans should do about guns (especially  semi-automatic), our mental health quagmire (which doesn't even allow mothers to report their mentally disturbed children to authorities), and how we can reduce the senseless carnage in the future.  But drink your tea first, please.  It will soothe you, I promise.

9 thoughtful remarks:

elle said...

Too true! Got a new tea from DD and the smell is heavenly, the taste not so much. Too sweet, although I add no sugar. Coffee for me. Not being an American I can't presume to say, but you have excellent points. It is largely values/attitudes whether they be attributed to perpetrators, victims or bystanders.

~*~Patty S said...

honestly Elizabeth I do not have the energy just now to express what is in my head ... I am finding it enough work to try and express what is in my broken heart

you raise good points...I did join FB last December ... it was not a fun place to be during the elections and I feared the same may be true after this school shooting tragedy

thank you for reminding me to visit Pat's Daughter's FB page

have a lovely day!

Caterina Giglio said...

Hi E, this issue is a hydra, so many issues at once, and I think the Prez should appoint someone who can take on the task of gun control, mental illness and violence in movies and media.
Just really popped by to say, have a beautiful holiday! x

Craftymoose Crafts said...

I strive hard to keep political issues off my blog, but I will say here that I do believe there should be some limitations on the kinds of firearms civilians can purchase. The mental health issue is complex--it needs reform, too. Far too many people wind up on the streets because "you can't make them go to shelters/hospitals, etc." I don't have a solution to this.

see you there! said...

I'm for banning semi-automatic weapons although that won't keep the illegal ones off the streets. I feel our culture is becoming more violent all the time. I don't have answer to this very complex situation.

I'll go drink my tea and contemplate.


Susan said...

Hi Elizabeth,

For me the whole issue about legal wapons is strange. In the Netherlands its very hard to get a legal wapon. And you HAVE to be a clubmember of a shooting range (is that how you spell that). It's not that normal for a citizen to have a wapon. And even here we have had our shootings. Not at schools thank the lord. The worst one was about a year ago at a shopping mall. This incident changed the law too: every new clubmember has to get a psychological exam and if the Club thinks your display unnerving behavior they HAVE to report that to the police.
But the fact stays there are a lot of people who can comit such horribel crimes. Its very disturbing.
Your parcel is on its way! I hope you will recieve it before Christmas.

Love Susan

Dianne said...

I fear that metal detectors in the schools will not prevent criminals from climbing in through a window, or gun control prevent criminals from obtaining guns illegally. we already have laws in place for gun owners--they have to go through a background check etc. to own a gun, but can take a gun from someone else and how do you prevent that? there are certainly no easy answers. any responsible gun owner will tell you that education in handling and safety is vital. Rather, I think we all need to take personal responsibility for taking note of and reporting odd/disturbed/dangerous behaviors in people who are anti-social.

It is so sad to think of the innocent lives that have been destroyed. My prayers are with them. Thank you for the tea break, and the art inspiration that you always provide!

Halle said...

I can't even comment on this issue. I have so many thoughts on the various issues...
All I came to say was happy T-day one day late. :)

jinxxxygirl said...

I believe in the right to bear arms.....do we need to make it more difficult to get one...yes...should some kind of mental health check be required? ...sure , fine....although the mental break may happen after they already have one...does your regular avg every day person need a semi automatic or automatic weapon?...no.....what should we do to 'fix' this? I honestly don't have the answers.......alot of people 'think' they do...but not me....there are many paths we could go down.......which one is the right one?......the people who are so sure of themselves that they know the right path...well those are the ones that worry me....this post is good...we all need to talk about this...not everybody can see all sides and all the shades of grey in between....we have to be very careful we are not railroading the mentally ill....think mental institutions of the past...we have to very careful of THAT path.....