The Slaughter of Innocents
Seventeen people were gunned down in cold blood at a high school last week.
This is a preventable tragedy. We know it’s preventable because nations around the world prevent it. In cases like Australia and the UK, it took a tragedy to spur action. But action followed, and the tragedy was not repeated.
In America, action does not follow. America allows the slaughter of innocents. If anything, America makes the next slaughter easier than the last.
This is not news.
We’ve been looking for news, anything that makes this slaughter different than the one before, and the one before that, and every slaughter in the past twenty years.
There’s the response of the survivors themselves, of course, kids who know bullshit when they hear it, aren’t afraid to call it out, and have the same Internet we do to spread their words. These are kids who have grown up with slaughters, slaughters in schools, for whom active-shooter drills are as familiar aa fire drills, familiar because their nation has failed them since birth.
There’s also pressure against corporations to drop their “affinity programs” with the NRA — product discounts for members, co-branded credit cards, that sort of thing. It’s how we ostracize in a capitalist society, and companies are much more sensitive to their consumers than politicians are to their constituents.
So that’s news, too.
Everything else? Not news.
It’s not news that folks who abide the slaughter of innocents are drowning the discussion with every diversionary argument they can imagine. It’s not news that we’re again being distracted from every law the NRA has advocated and opposed in the past thirty years to further its agenda of allowing the slaughter of as many innocents as efficiently as possible. It’s not news that they’re trying to tire us out until we move on to await the next slaughter of innocents.
After all, it’s worked before. Every time.
Maybe this time will be different. Maybe the kids will pull off what we grownups can’t, a sustained effort to combat the well-paid, well-placed powers who know they just have to ride out the grief and anger again, who always have their Thoughts & Prayers ready for the next slaughter of innocents, whose souls can be bought so cheap that even the Devil doesn’t want them.
Now that would be news.