What I Know About the Navy Yard Shooting

Sometimes you go numb, and sometimes you get pissed off. Maybe it’s because this Navy Yard shooting is so close to home for me, or maybe it was just time for me to be pissed, but pissed I am.

I don’t know anymore about what happened than anybody outside of authorities knows at this point. I know that it is yet another example of  “good guys with guns” not being enough to prevent this from happening. I know victims families couldn’t care less about political squabbling over the issue. I know that the NRA will use this latest rash of murders to further their corporate agenda, and that as a society we will barely blink at the audacity of them doing so. I know that this society is sliding into some sort of undefined oblivion, the consequences of which are at best the slow decay of our collective humanity and at worse the first stage in our own extinction.

I know civilized societies experience tragedies, but I also know that civilized societies should not be experiencing them multiple times a year, such as this country has done recently. I know that while I may not have the answer to what to do about all of this, an answer from society as a whole is as urgent as it is elusive. Perhaps it is urgent because it is elusive.

I know a year from now somebody somewhere will lay a wreath near a plaque of some kind at the Navy Yard, and words and prayers will be spoken and broadcast. It will all pass into the lore and legends of the District of Columbia even as more tragedies, (many if not most involving shootings) will rise up into our collective, diminished attention span in a seemingly perpetual ebb and flow of broadcast mayhem de jour.

I also know there are still good people. Heroes. Kind, brave and generous people. I try to be one myself, (though I don’t know how successful I have been.) But despite my knowledge of such people being out there, I know that if something doesn’t change pretty fucking quick in this society, and people having lunch at a military installation, or seeing a movie in Colorado, or going to fucking elementary school continue to be vulnerable on a regular basis, the good, honest, brave, kind people are going to lose the battle. It’s only a matter of time, if the deepest aspects of the citizenry do not rouse themselves from the fat, ipad/smartphone/texting/short attention span complacency into which we are ever so gradually allowing ourselves to sink.

I know it.

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