The sometimes serious, but generally frivolous, musings of a city girl now living in the woods.
I have recently been researching and writing about violence and how violence causes more violence and how trauma affects brain development, especially in young people and all that jazz. Only it was in response, primarily, to the most recent Israeli bombardment of Gaza. That and the, ahem, challenge that is teaching middle-schoolers.
But then, on Friday, a man called Adam Lanza walked into a school and shot up a bunch of people, mostly kids. We don’t know why he did it; suffice it to say he was troubled. And in that act, he has replicated, like a virus, more suffering, more trauma and more troubled-ness than perhaps he could imagine. I will return to, and publish soon, my thoughts about Palestine, and the effects of violence, in general. For now, though, I just wish to ask the good people of our country–and our world, because while our gun laws are specifically, American-ly shitty, we don’t own violence–to remember that the greatest goal of a community is to care for one another.
It is time to do a lot of work–WORK!–to alter the distinctly American cultures of violence, individualism and exclusion that have been lain bare in the aftermath of Newtown.
I would like, though, for the guiding motto in this work to be “all of us, together.” I long to move toward a culture that honors the collective, that protects the vulnerable and that recognizes that we all are absolutely in this together. If there is to be any silver lining, whatsoever, in this tragedy, it will be that a culture of “we’ emerges and we join together to make sure no one is suffering or excluded. Neither kids, nor elders; queers, nor the poor.
President Obama said these words Sunday, at a vigil for those who were lost, about parenting:
“It comes as a shock at a certain point where you realize no matter how much you love these kids, you can’t do it by yourself, that this job of keeping our children safe and teaching them well is something we can only do together, with the help of friends and neighbors, the help of a community and the help of a nation. And in that way we come to realize that we bear responsibility for every child, because we’re counting on everybody else to help look after ours, that we’re all parents, that they are all our children.”