Originally, my post this week was going to be about supporting the positive decisions of those around us. I have postponed that post until next week to talk about the sorrow in my heart over the tragic events that took place in Orlando during the wee hours of Sunday, June 12th.
I will be honest, following the shootings at the University of California at Santa Barbara in 2014 I have done my utmost to ignore the mass shootings that seem to plague our life here in the United States.
This particular shooting took place shortly after E was born and I was an absolute wreck.
How could I raise my daughter in a world where refusing to have sex means risking her life?
It is that question, more than any other, that makes me afraid to raise my two girls. These precious little beings that have been entrusted to us are beautiful, smart, and tenacious. I love them so much it hurts.
That said, I do have some opinions that I want to share.
Every single one of those people that died have someone out there who loves them so much it hurts.
The shooter has someone out there who loves him so much it hurts.
Every one of us has someone out there who has so much love for us that he (or she) would do anything to stop the hurting and show us a brighter path.
It is truly my belief that remembering this love, almost more than anything else, would stop us from hurting one another.
Sadly, many do not feel this love and that is why I believe it is critical that other measures need to be put into place.
We need more robust gun control laws. Yes, the “bad guys” are still going to get weapons, but. . . dammit! we can make it harder for them.
We need a better mental health system. A system that recognizes the diseases of the mind have effects just as real as diseases of the body.
We need to have open and honest conversations about what it means to be a man in our society.
We need to get people across the table from one another to start to build some understanding (link to an 18 minute TED talk, you will love it!).