When it’s no longer good for you

It’s hard to give up things we love or feel we need, especially when those things are deeply entrenched in our culture. But sometimes we have to because those things are not good for us and perhaps no longer serves society. America has to let go of its gun culture and the right to bear arms. At one time, this may have served people well, but it obviously doesn’t anymore. I don’t want to simplify the horror of the slaughter at the elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut and I know it could happen even in places where guns are illegal. But it’s much more likely to happen when guns are legal. The killer’s mother was a gun enthusiast. Her home was loaded with weapons. People are saying it’s not only about guns. It’s about mental health. It could very well be but if there were no guns available to this young man, then maybe he wouldn’t have been able to harm 25 innocent children and one young teacher. Didn’t this just happen the other day in a movie theatre where Batman was showing? How many more times does it have to happen before the laws change? Next time it might very well be one hundred children. I know many Americans love their guns and it’s hard to give up what we think we need. I imagine it feeling like someone telling Canadians to give up hockey or for Jamaicans to give up jerk chicken and reggae music. It would be strange. But if South Africa gave up apartheid and East Germany gave up communism, and certain societies a long time ago gave up slavery, then I believe America can give up their gun culture. Unfortunately it usually takes the suffering or death of a lot of people before anything actually changes.