“I’m going to shoot my grandmother.”
“I’ve shot my grandmother.”
“I’m going to shoot an elementary school.”
These are the three messages on Facebook sent by the 18-year old Texas gunman who was shot dead before he could send his fourth message. But before that he killed 19 children and two teachers.
This is the latest bout of gun-fueled mass murder in the United States, but surprisingly President Joe Biden blamed the gun laws for mass shootings. I’m at a loss who frames the laws. Today the ratio of 120.5 firearms per 100 residents of United States is the highest around the world. Is it not alarming?
The political angle must always be there. Gun lobbies may also be there. But the rationalists advocate a culture of freedom and liberalism. They say that this sort of incident is just a symptom, and not the disease. The root cause is a mental health illness.
There may be some substance in this argument, but what is the reason for such a mental health sickness? No buddy, it’s not correct. If we go deep, we will find that the root cause lies in our family and societal issues, and finally within us, our own behaviour. But who will blame himself or herself for any malaise?
We are becoming cordless but embracing discords of our own accord. Myself has become mine fortified within the walls of the self. We don’t extend our arms in wilful embrace of togetherness even within the family. All are busy with themselves.
My friends in US, please don’t think that this is peculiar to you or your country alone. It’s happening elsewhere too. This world is a small village. Whatever happens in one corner doesn’t remain confined to that part. It spreads like coronavirus.
I get surprised when I come across news items of minors raping minors in India. There are so many Nirbhaya cases despite laws being made stringent. Minors are getting involved in all sorts of crimes, and that is irrespective of their family or social strata.
Minors are alone. They can’t vent their feelings in a constructive manner. They try to do everything as soon as possible, and when they can’t, deviance is the natural outcome, and this deviance comes mostly in the form of anger and frustration. Even on petty issues, they are ready to go to any extreme, even killing self or others.
The fact remains that they don’t get the company they deserve. The vested interests are always lurking around to grab them for their own ulterior motives. I have myself experienced it when I was in the eleventh standard and I got allurements that a teenager can be easily carried away.
The issue needs to be addressed threadbare, with consequences, not against anything or anybody, but within ourselves. It has become imperative to give in to the good that abounds in the vicinity rather than the evil that lurks within that may or may not show its ugly face.
To be or not to be of Shakespeare’s Hamlet soliloquy is the question that needs to be whispered aloud. Silence has no meaning. We have to speak out the stark reality that may sound terrible, or may even be interfering with the reason of someone, but we must not forget that it may give some reason to someone to seek a better life in this universe itself.