It’s hard to fathom the amount of hurt a human must feel to make them decide that the way to deal with the darkness is to kill others.
In a discussion with my family earlier this evening about our thoughts on the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, a very empathetic comment was made by my step-dad: that the killer might have gone after all the kids because he felt his Mom loved them more than him. Could that have been part of the root of all of that horror?
Humans are always capable of killing. Always. What keeps us from rampages is a whole lot of chemicals, social stigmas, and evolutionary brain functions that keep our “wilder side” in check, and the frontal cortex that can help relieve stress and anger through other creative outlets (like being an artist). To actually go the distance, though, to go beyond the boundaries set up by evolution and society to cause a massacre is to go to a very, very dark place, indeed.
I feel so sorry for the victim’s families, for the witnesses, for the first response team members and for the person who did the killings. That boy must have been unstable emotionally and in a WORLD of hurt to make him decide that the best way to deal with the problem would be to do what he did at the Elementary school. But, he’s not the only person to have committed that type of atrocity. The United States has seen shootings at schools before, this particular one being only the 2nd most deadly shooting after the 2007 Virginia Tech rampage that left 32 people dead. Horrible, Horrible, Horrible. How can these people exist? And more importantly, how the hell are they getting their hands on guns?
I’m embarrassed. I’m sickened by the national headlines running these stories. Our brains have developed over the millennia to continue to carry us toward alternative ways of dealing with problems that make us uncomfortable, rather than killing someone. And, just like our brains are changing and growing, I hope that our society can keep up by also changing and growing. We’re moving into a new year and I hope that we can move into a clearer state of mind, as a nation, over how to deal with gun violence.
December 15, 2012 at 5:56 am by Natalie Allen