By Robert M. Marovich
Those of you who read the Journal of Gospel Music know I don’t use this forum to vent my political and social views.
But I’m too outraged to let this moment pass.
We Americans ought to be ashamed of ourselves.
We allow mass shooting after mass shooting to take place with little, if any, consequence. The tragedy last week in Buffalo, New York, and this week in Uvalde, Texas, are beyond heartbreaking. Just like Sandy Hook and every other mass shooting in this country. I don’t have children, but it doesn’t mean I am not moved by the overwhelming loss each parent, each grandparent, each aunt, uncle, neighbor, friend is going through right now in Uvalde, and what friends and family are still processing in Buffalo.
Nobody needs an assault rifle to protect their home. Nobody needs an assault rifle to hunt (I personally abhor hunting – it’s not a sport to shoot an innocent, unarmed animal). Someone with mental illness but without weaponry cannot shoot up a school.
It’s time for action.
As Rep. John Lewis said, make “good trouble.” Each of us has a voice. Each of us can do something.
If you are in a position to do so, vote out those who pander to the NRA and gun lobbyists instead of serving their constituents. Vote in people with political courage and backbone, who believe in “the land of the free and the home of the brave,” not more cowardly politicians who lack self-control, self-awareness, and, in many cases, the basic competence to serve the people. Give to, or volunteer for, organizations that are doing something to prevent further gun violence everywhere, or are promoting common sense gun safety. Nobody is going to take away anyone’s guns, but what about responsible gun ownership?
Maybe no one will read this. Maybe it’s too hard for some to face the truth. There will be those who don’t agree. I may get hate mail, but frankly those who send it are probably feeling guilty or simply ineffectual at life. But I believe what my good friend Rev. Harold Bailey says: “I’m not going to hell for anybody.”
So let not this moment pass. Do something. Otherwise, if we choose once again to be apathetic, to do nothing, to weep, pray, and move on to the next entertainment flavor of the day or the next obsession on our smartphone, we are a disgrace to the world God entrusted to us, we are a disgrace to ourselves, and we are a disgrace to our children, for we have failed them. And for that failure, even God may have a tough time forgiving.