I had three ideas for blog postings tonight. I even have outlines, actually scribbled words and arrows on memo paper (SWAMPs?), for two of them, so I could express my thoughts in an orderly, coherent fashion that may actually be meaningful and entertaining. But, my plans changed when I heard the news, while driving home from work.
A gunman armed with a semi-automatic weapon opened fire in a mall in Portland this afternoon. According to the article I read in The Oregonian, three people (two victims and the shooter) are dead and another is critically injured.
Suddenly, there is nothing I can say here, because everything I had to say seems trite. I perceive the word “people” as multiple number of breathing, feeling, thinking, caring human beings. I don’t understand why people should be able to own semi-automatic assault-style weapons or high-capacity clips, and why The People aren’t demanding measures be put in place to reduce the opportunity for this to happen. So tonight I am going to start looking for answers.
AND I am drafting a letter to send to my state’s representatives in D.C.. I’m sick of hearing about people’s mothers and brothers and children and friends getting shot while watching movies, shopping at the mall, driving down freeways, going to school, or swimming in a river. I am tired of feeling bad, moving on with life, and then having it happen again. So, this time I am doing something about it. I am expressing my concerns with the state (the lack of it) of effective Mental Health care and the ease of access to lethal weapons and munitions in the U.S.
Yes, I do know that I am probably wasting my time, but when it comes down to it, SOMEONE in a Congressional office somewhere will browse my letter, or at least part of it, because they MUST…which will put it one reader up on this, AND give me the comfort of knowing I actually DID something, this time.