Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Our outrage: our hypocrisy.  It is cathartic, at times like these, to vent outrage at what seem like glaring fault.  As a supporter of much stricter gun control laws, I can, today, point to what has happened in Newtown, and feel intense anger.  I can say what I have always felt about the insane availability of hideous implements of death.  I hate them.  I hate the fact that people are so adamant about defending them.  My outrage, though I do express it, almost always, upon a little reflection, comes back in the form of my own hypocrisy.  There are acts of violence committed with assault weapons and hand guns and bombs all the time.  Appalling instances- all of them.  Whether it is an elementary school in New England, or a dingy bedroom in the neighborhood.  There is, however, undeniably, also, a violence of inaction and acceptance that is just as devastating, and I am guilty of it. I tolerate a culture of violence.  I accept violence on TV.  I watch sports that are violent, I live in a culture of war and warfare.  I am reconciled to the fact that my nation kills people all over the world.  That my president, who I was so proud of when he spoke as comforter and chief in Newtown, is the same man who allows drone strikes to kill innocent people around the world.  In my tolerance of hypocrisy and violence I am hypocrite.   From Bugs Bunny, to Rocky, to Brave heart, to the lord of the rings, I watch it.  I am numbed to the endless portrayals of death and murder and slaughter on TV.  I am numb to “collateral damage” in wars overseas.  Violence is in me.  Imprinted and in residence in my psyche.  Perhaps a part of what I am.  I tolerate it. I Allow it a place in my day to day life. My inaction is glaring back at me when I see the faces of children on the news, now dead.  And I cannot escape my culpability, as an individual, as a citizen, as an American, for the sad and unwavering tolerance of everyday’s violence.

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