The problem is not guns. Not easy access to guns. Not “gun culture”. Not the Second Amendment. Not the Constitution. Not “obstructionist Republicans.” Not the NRA. Not the “bitter clingers.” Not the “vast right-wing conspiracy”.
The problem is that as a society, we no longer share a familial, religious, cultural, philosophical, and historical identity, but have replaced them with empty, artificial substitutes devoid of lasting meaning and significance; a yawning, nihilistic emptiness that offers no anchor, hope, or solace, only echoes in the darkness.
The things we’re losing – that we’ve lost – once made us stronger and more unified; more caring and more empathetic as a society. Truths we held as unassailable and indisputable are now not just being brought into question, but are being rejected and replaced with fiction wholesale, as the constant and accelerating redefinition of society continues apace.
We no longer hold as a fundamental, irrefutable truth that the nuclear family – father and mother (married) and children (raised by both parents) is the ideal, primary, foundational cornerstone of society. Instead unwed mothers and absent fathers produce unwanted, disposable offspring with random, unattached and varied partners, resulting in children who are poorly raised in temporary, transient homes, and we are expected to value these arrangements and their inevitable, attenuating outcomes to the same degree as the ideal – and to not give voice to the possibility of an ideal on pain of being labeled a bigot.
Worse still is the wholesale destruction of generations of children through abortion; 55 million (and counting) of whom had their promising lives brutally and abruptly ended, many at the whim of a reluctant parent, many – through baby-parts broker Planned Parenthood – as a result of a system covetous of the profitability inherent in their substance.
We no longer share a Judeo-Christian religious value system, but instead insist on a sanitized, sterilized society in which the public square must be adamantly atheist, devoid of reference to any religious faith, while homes and churches are permitted to act on faiths and beliefs that have been stripped of substance and significance, because to hold fast to “outdated, antiquated” truths is to engage in bigoted, misogynistic, unscientific hatred. We attack and persecute Christianity and Judaism, holding both as arrogant, backwards, bigoted, outdated, antiquated, homophobic, sexist, and racist.
We no longer hold as sacrosanct the unmatched achievements and history of western civilization and culture. Its heroes and histories dismissed as patriarchal, racist and rooted in conflict. Its accomplishments tainted by judgmental religion, unknowable “privilege”, or rendered flawed because of a failing by someone at some time in some place. Its scientific achievements, inventions and innovations rejected as mere tools of oppression, war and colonialism. We are hounded and badgered to arrive at the conclusion that the west did nothing of consequence, value or worth until it willingly learned to hold those same things as evil and used them to undermine its own past.
We no longer value the philosophies of Aristotle or Aquinas, but replace them with nihilism. We replace thought with ideology, we replace thinking with conformity, we replace debate with filibuster. We argue about the right to redefine the fundamental cornerstones of society, whether doctors should help their patients commit suicide, whether pedophilia is simply a different form of sexuality, whether laws that delay or impede the progress of our political agendas should simply be ignored as “procedural niceties.”
As a result, for this and the immediately preceding generations – and worse still, for generations yet to come – a pitch-black, yawning abyss of loveless, valueless, directionless, lawless reality awaits. An empty existence, devoid of truth or understanding. And we wonder how they could simply, thoughtlessly, and without remorse or a twinge of humanity, callously extinguish the lives of innocents around them.
The roots of gun violence lies not with guns, but within the hearts of men.