It's a hell of a thing killin' a man. You take away all he's got and all he's ever gonna have. - Will Muny, (Unforgiven)
There is something obscene about 17 people dying on Valentine's Day, the day during which one offers expressions of love.
14 of them were children who saw all their dreams, hopes, desires and destinies cut short by a barrage of bullets.
3 were teachers whose jobs were to inspire these young people to become the best they could be.
How do you make sense of the senseless?
What does the Bible say about acts like these?
Where does the police acronym M. O. M. fit into this equation?
The heart of man is desperately wicked, every imagination of his heart is only evil continually. His feet are always swift to shed blood. Indeed the favorite occupation of man is doing in his fellow man. He harbors a perverse delight in witnessing the destruction, literally and figuratively, of his fellow man.
Whenever his presented with two options, good and bad, invariably he will choose the worse option.
Because justice is delayed the heart of man becomes fully set to do evil so he is not inclined to shun or avoid the very appearance of evil. At the slightest perceived insult he will employ any weapon at his disposal to annihilate the person or persons who injured him, or caused his discomfort.
The fallout and collateral damage from his actions never cross his mind, and he will carry out his act of retribution anywhere-- church or school.
The sanctity of the place does not deter him, and he will execute his nefarious mission in any location at anytime.
It is undeniable that the basic purpose of a gun, whether in defense or aggression, is to kill its intended victim.
AR-15's are designed to kill as many people as possible in the shortest amount of time.
It is primarily constructed to be an effective, efficient form of mass mayhem.
Once placed in service, it is certain that the result will be multiple casualties.
What do we do? How do we slow down these type of occurrences?
Thoughts, prayers and moments of silence, to be brutally honest, are hopelessly ineffective. They do nothing to ease the pain of the victims and their families.
Sin complicates matters, and in order to address a problem after sin has entered the fray requires a multi-faceted approach.
Some possible ideas worth considering:
1. Religion classes in school, not Christianity only, but religion that emphasizes respect for a higher authority and the value of created human life. Failing that, at least values based courses that center on the importance of all human beings being allowed the uninterrupted opportunity to exist and pursue his or her particular destiny, from the cradle to the grave.
2. Access and availability to weapons of mass destruction must be curtailed for all men and women--not just the mentally disabled. All people, as outlined above, are capable of horrific acts--not only the clinically insane. Other countries, believe it or not, do not experience these types of incidents, because these types of firearms are not so readily available. As one Parkland student so succinctly observed, Nicolas Cruz would have not been able to kill as many people with a knife.
3. Guns like AR- 15's should be at least as difficult as the process to obtain a hand gun, coupled with increasing the age limit in acquiring same, when hopefully one is more mature and level headed.
I think the majority of us should be able at least to agree on these points. If not God help us all.
Note to Rush Limbaugh and all those provocateurs on the right. This is not a political issue. The surviving fellow students who are now protesting are not political pawns of the left, being urged to push a political point. Moreover it is an insult to their intelligence and will to suggest such a crass motive. Here is an opinion expressed by Rep. Kingston of Georgia
“Their sorrow can very easily be hijacked by left-wing groups who have an agenda,” Kingston said on CNN’s “New Day.”
“Do we really think 17-year-olds on their own are going to plan a nationwide rally?” added the conservative activist, who is also the CNN contributor.
Let's think about this for a moment. These are students attending an institution where one is taught to think, reason and form opinions based on your life experiences. If somehow that opinion differs from yours there is something, shady and underhanded going on. They are being influenced by the evil, leftist liberals.
Word to those on the left or right--a person who disagrees with you is not always, lazy, corrupt with a particular, political agenda.
They were there when those indiscriminate, undiscerning bullets were flying around their classrooms. They did not recall hearing the projectiles inquiring if a particular victim was Republican or Democrat, Leftist or Rightist. Bullets are equal opportunity offenders. They realize that we are all dying out here, and we are continually walking in the valley of the shadow of death.
The next time it may be your son, daughter, niece or nephew in the crosshairs of an AR-15 equipped with the bump stock.
V. Knowles is a husband, father and prison minister with an interest in penning issues that serve to uplift mankind. He melds his love for Classic literature, The Bible and pop culture - as sordid as it may be - into highly relatable columns of truth, faith and justice. Hence the name: Just Thinking. If he's not buried in a book or penning his next column, you may find him pinned to his sectional watching a good old Country and Western flick. He is also the co-author of HOLA America: Guts, Grit, Grind and Further Traits in the Successful American Immigrant.