I don't think there is anything I can say new here about the events that took place this past weekend in Orlando Florida. I also don't think I need to recap the events. It's been everywhere. Well documented, at least to this point.
What I can do is to ask one simple question:
"How many more?"
How many more people can and will be killed in senseless acts of violence?
What captivated me most about this event....aside from it being such a heart wrenching turn of events...is a quote I read about the event in Redeye Chicago:
"These are nonsensical kilings of our children," she said, sobbing. "They're killing our babies!" ~ Christine Leinonen, Mother of Christopher Leinonen, Pulse club shooting victim.
At the time of that quote, Mrs. Leinonen wasn't sure of the status of her son. She later found out that he, and his fiancee, were killed in the shooting, and instead of having a wedding, they will be having a joint funeral.
Those words are far too familiar to me. I hear them in almost every story I read about violence here in Chicago. It is a word I've heard spoken to my face by mothers who've lost their children to violence. While the violence here in our streets, to some, may appear a world away from the violence that has befallen Orlando TWICE this weekend...it truly is one and the same.
Let me just go back and recap that. There were 2 high profile shootings in Florida this weekend.
And of course, the NRA will sit silent for a day or two. They never have anything to say after these types of events. The bloody bastards don't even have the decency to offer condolences. Quite the contrary, starting 23 hours ago they posted a litany of anecdotal quotes and editorials on their Twitter about how we need MORE GUNS to keep us safe, including this glorious gem:
Just because you're being investigated as a terrorist doesn't mean you don't deserve to have a warm Uzi under your arm....right?
People have got to wake up to this nonsense, and these nonsensical people...who don't care about anyone other than themselves, and their fantastical fantasies that a firearm will make them the masters of their destiny and fate, no matter the costs.
Any organization who doesn't even have the gumption to say "Sorry for the loss of life" has got to be a gaggle of ne'er do wells and dirtbags.
And now we're left with my initial question. How many more? This wasn't even the first mass shooting this year, somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 since 1982. Mother Jones did a fantastic job of tracking and mapping mass shootings since 1982. In most of those cases, the guns were procured through legal means.
Which brings to question something that I will explore in another blog post;
"Why does someone need an AR-15 in today's world?"
If you're hunting with an AR-15, you suck and shouldn't be hunting to begin with...and that's coming from someone who has met and talked at length with bow hunters. There's no sport in that.
And so, as we grieve, mourn, and reflect upon what's our next step in the race to prevent the next mass shooting, I can assure you that the answers are simple. Don't fall for the NRA's okie doke....their fear mongering will get you nowhere. Putting moreAR-15's into more hands will get you nowhere. It won't benefit where you live, it won't benefit Chicago.
Food for thought.