Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sandy Hook: The Solution to the One Thing That Caused This Tragedy

Reading about the mass killing of kindergartners at Sandy Hook was heartbreaking for me, as I am sure it was for you. 
 
On a different level, I was also saddened while reading comments on Facebook and at the bottom of news stories, calling for changes to keep such massacres from happening. 

The tone of many of such comments was that they couldn't understand why people couldn't see that the clear cause of these incidents is _______________ (fill in the blank).  Unfortunately, many who believe there is a clear-cut answer to this problem have very different views of what the main problem is. 

Additionally, once you do focus on that one problem, then you find that there are people who disagree very strongly about how to address that one problem. For example, let's take the availability of assault rifles and handguns.  For some, common sense dictates that everyone carry a gun, to either prevent a shooting in a public place, or to stop it quickly once it starts. But to others, the answer is to keep people from being able to legally own such guns at all. 

But what's most striking is that, to both groups, these are the common-sense solutions, and they cannot see why anyone would see it different.
 

The reality is that no tragedy can possibly be so simple. These horrific events always--always--are the result of multiple factors. In the aftermath of this shooting,  the ones I heard mentioned most often:

Gun availability 
Mental illness and our nation's failure to take care of those who suffer from it
A broken world 
An unseen enemy (Ephesians 6:12)
A culture which perpetuates and glorifies violence through movies and video games
Drugs and/or alcohol 
A lack of prayer/bible instructions in schools
Sexual permissiveness (which leads to many kids being raised in single-parent homes) 

...and several more things which don't come to mind right now.


When I engaged in this discussion yesterday, I argued, and still maintain today, that those who choose to focus on just one item in this long list, and expecting that addressing that one item will have a significant impact, are engaging in wishful thinking. 


I'm sorry if such an argument is a problem for anyone. Most of us will look at that list of factors, and one thing sticks out as being the cause of the problem.  Thing is, for each of us, it's a different one.

And that, in itself, says a lot.

2 comments:

Luke Montgomery said...

I think whatever our view of the particulars we should all be able to see that it is a problem of evil, and that has only one solution... Goodness!

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