Another day in the life of America. Another mass shooting. Another mass murder. This time it happened during a July 4 parade in Highland Park, Illinois. A gunman climbed an unsecured ladder to an unsecured roof and shot 30 unsuspecting people, killing six of them.
After being at large for most of the day, the murderer was arrested.
The bears have released a statement regarding the latest tragedy involving guns and humans far too troubled and evil to own them. That’s what happens at times like this, even if it doesn’t matter.
Thoughts and prayers. At this point, it’s more caricatural than cliché. And yet, that well-worn phrase made its way into the team’s statement. What else can I say, really?
The problem is simply beyond our ability to properly diagnose and repair. We just can’t do it. We can try. We can make minor progress. But it will never be definitively resolved because we don’t have the political will to do so. People may want it, but the politicians we elected won’t. And those who think it’s easy to replace politicians who resist meaningful safety laws that don’t prevent responsible gun ownership don’t understand how a toxic two-party system really works.
Here is the reality. If you’re going to live here, you have to accept being shot in a public place as one of the daily risks of leaving your home. Go to the grocery store, to the parade, to church, to school, anywhere, and you could be shot and killed. Someone who has nothing to do with a gun might get one and might show up and aim at you or those you have a solemn duty to protect but cannot.
You can’t do it because we’re broken. Basically and, to all appearances, irretrievably. Those who are supposed to be the best of us are the worst, selling American lives for political support and acting like they’ve done no such thing, even though everyone knows it.
Either way, that’s who we are as a people. As a nation. It doesn’t change. Some like to say, America, love it or leave it. Lots of Americans love it, but they won’t really feel safe unless they pack up and leave.