I tried to avoid writing about Newtown, but failed

August 1966, when I was 10 years old, was the first time I learned that human beings were capable of going out and randomly killing those around them.

Some of you will recall the Texas Bell Tower sniper.

Over the years I've learned that people are capable of doing this over and over again, for whatever reason.

Since hearing about the shooting in Newtown I've tried to sit down and write something a half dozen times.

None of them have worked. All it did was reveal to me that when it comes to any kind of killing, in particular the killing of children, I am not the kind and caring human being I think I am.

But I knew this.

When crimes like this happen, I've learned to avoid reading or watching anything about it. I catch snippets of what happened on the radio news breaks while out driving around. One of the things I want to hear is that the person who perpetrated such a crime is dead. That they were executed on the spot by a cop or a bystander. If nothing else, I want to hear that they killed themselves before they were captured.

I want to know nothing about these people, not their name, not their age. I want to know nothing about their past and what may have driven them to go out and randomly kill others.

Especially children.

All I want to know is that they are dead and will no longer walk on this same earth that I do.

I want them gone and forgotten.

I feel this way about anyone that goes out and kills another human being for no apparent reason.

You can easily spot the hypocrisy in this train of thought, I become what I hate in others.

This is not a good thing.

If I were a magician, if I had the abilities, a cloak of protection would be placed over all children till they were 18. A cloak that would protect them, sadly, from the adults around them.

Come the age of 18, you're an adult, you're on your own. Hopefully you will have learned something by then.

You'll have learned how precious it is to be a child and how this should never, for any reason, be violated by anyone.

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  • Almost every morning my friend Dale Bowman, outdoor writer for the Chicago Sun Times, puts up what he calls his Ramble with Storm.

    This morning his Ramble focuses on gun culture rather than gun control. It's what I attempted to write in my first failed attempts to say something about Newtown. He says it well and is worth reading.


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