A version of this was first posted four years ago. My prayers go out, too, for those we sorrowed with then, whose hearts are rent open, whose pulse rises, whose fear returns with each new atrocity that we visit upon one another.
Guns are not choosy. Guns just kill people. It’s what they do.
We are hearing more, bit by bit, about the latest victims of the latest American massacre. Each detail chips a little more flint from our hearts. The woman who found heaven in a softball diamond. The police officer and football coach. The “superhero who loved country music.” The man who died in the lap of his best friend. The father who was shot shielding another, and whose son tried so hard to save him. God heal their souls from their violent passage and bring them to peace; God help his mother, her brother, their daughter, his friends; God console all those who are in grief.
A hotel room stocked as an armoury of enviable firepower, and it was legal, meaning we allowed it, according to news reports:
Of those weapons, 12 had devices known as bump stocks attached that allowed semi-automatic rifles to mimic fully automatic gunfire. The ATF agent, Jill Snyder, said officials had determined the devices were legal. The weapons – rifles, shotguns, pistols – were purchased in Nevada, Utah, California and Texas, she said.
We failed to control those guns, and because we did, a previously law-abiding, unsuspected citizen of these United States used them to kill dozens of people, dancing on a Sunday night, and to injure hundreds – hundreds – more.
At the risk of repeating myself, and with all respect to the dead and the injured and those who mourn them: Guns kill people. It is their raison d’etre. That being the case, we must control them. We must clip their wings and limit their clips and we must do it before more blood is shed, because if we do not, that blood is on our hands.
We, the people, run this country, so we say. Guns kill people. We, the people, need to fight back.