In the wake of the recent rash of school shootings, there has been the requisite post-traumatic scramble for digestible answers, pithy stabs at meaning and morally navigable conclusions.
But for all of the Monday-morning analysis and 11th-hour editorializing, there appears to be no one in mainstream media really confronting the genuinely ugly inward questions that must be addressed, namely:What is it about the psychology of today’s American teenager that is enabling this behavior?
Predictably, no one in our pathetic league of cultural commentators wants to peer into that deep, dark, truthful mirror, probably because their careers depend on its warped reflection.
But in a country where the celebration of violence and cowboy-style confrontation inspires foreign policy and spawns a thousand lucrative cottage industries, should we really be all that frickin’ surprised?
The root of the problem is that we enable our young people more to pull out a gun than a pencil.
And when our government’s tepid excuse for education and social services turns generations of youth into poor, maligned, disenfranchised and intellectually (if not nutritionally) starved pariahs, they need not even turn to cable television, metal radio or “WarCraft” for activation of their violent hormonal impulses.
They need only to check out a White House news conference to get that kind of bloodthirst.
It is my opinion that as long as violence is seen as a political solution, so will it be seen as a cultural solution.
Come on, people. A school shooter is not a tough cocktail to mix. Just take one Ritalin kid and add two shots of the military-industrial complex – with a dash of suburban-style expectations – and voila! Armed teen!
So, let’s employ some good old-fashioned American hand-wringing. Well, now, this is quite the stickler, ain’t it? How do we solve this, boys and girls? Did you bring your scientific calculators today? Turn over your test when you finish, or at least before the quiet goth kid finishes you and your teacher first.
Ah, MSNBC.com already has its five-paragraph essay handed in. “Does Every School Need A Metal Detector?” screams its moronic pseudo-think piece du jour.
Excuse me, teacher, I’ve already completed the exam. My blue book has two words written in my dead classmate’s blood. It says, “BAN GUNS.”
Is it a problem that I used red ink? I know that’s what’s used to correct the world’s problems and probably my paper, too.
See, our rifle-toting friends at the Capitol are so wrapped up in the preservation of their precious Second Amendment that they forgot about the First, which is the right to be free.
We can’t be a free society with guns in it. Period. End of argument.
Does that mean we neuter law enforcement? I’m not saying that. We should just stop selling guns to each other. OK?
We can prattle all we want about the issues and factors and cultural stimuli, but what it comes down to is the ability to blow people away, which is provided by firearms, not by Judas Priest or pro wrestling.
It’s not going to matter two pesos how many academic studies we commission about causes of stress, depression, anxiety and latent violent tendencies.
Bullets and politicians kill people, not pills or DVDs. Remember that the next time this goes down, because it will.
Adri Mehra welcomes comments at [email protected]