I am sure it is worse here in New York City than elsewhere, but I'm hearing stories from all over. The news has become unbearable to watch! Every minute there is a shooting or a beating or some frightening example of bullying. Women and kids are being thrown out of windows. Stray bullets are killing 4 year olds and suicides are happening everywhere. Within days of the Aurora massacre, five or so were shot in the middle of a basketball game in Harlem. This after 16 murders took place here over the 4th of July. WHAT IS GOING ON??
People are ANGRY! That's what's going on! But... people have always been angry..and maybe they have said words like 'hell' and 'damn' as they did when I was a child. As a teenager I was admonished if the word 'sh--' came out of my mouth. Now what happens when we get right in someone's face with today's swear language? We get pushed! And if someone pushes us, we push right back. And if the pushing and shoving aren't satisfying enough, the beatings begin. And if the beating isn't enough weapons are sought. And the weapons go from clubs to GUNS! It's downright DEPRESSING! No wonder the suicides!
A year or two ago I interviewed a lady friend living with her kids in Albany's inner city. She told me that it is common knowledge for all the street gangs that guns are piled inside trash barrels strategically placed on the streets. And gangs really begin when just one angry person grabs another angry person to help take care of the perpetrator.
And what are people so angry about? Well maybe they don't have enough money for the things they want. Or maybe life hasn't worked out for them the way it has for you.(Holmes in Aurora had just failed an exam crucial to his getting his Ph.D) Others probably want what you may have. (Bullying typically comes from the 'have nots' who simply may not have your 'looks', or grades, or talents, or whatever). And if being nice doesn't achieve what they want, they get ANGRY! And when guns don't do the trick for angry countries they use rockets (think mideast), and before you know it WMD's!
The key here is people have always wanted what you may have, but they no longer are willing to take the route that you probably took to get it...and they want it now!! Unfortunatly there are no shortcuts! Maybe if families go back to 1)explaining legitimate routes that must be taken to get what one wants, 2)they themselves go back to the 'hell' and 'damn' stage verbally 3)we put GOD back in our lives and prayer back in our routine, 4)GUNS become the possessions of only those responsible for our security...(and more of those trained for that are put on our payrolls), and maybe if 5)the guns lying around homes become unusable antiques, we have a chance of restoring order to our lives.
I dunno...what do you think?
Mimi Scott, Ph.D