Monday, November 6, 2017

"Code Red" And Crying At My Dinner Table

Tonight at dinner I witnessed one of the biggest mood reversals in my life. Sometimes I play jaunty music at dinner, and tonight it was uptempo fifties doo-wop. My daughters were loving it, getting up from their plates to dance manically to "Blue Moon." It was one of those too perfect moments, like something out of a movie about a carefree, happy family. A minute later I was crying.

They were telling us about their day, and started to tell us about how they did a "code red" drill at school today. With the same wide-eyed manic energy they were demonstrating how to hide under a table if a shooter was in the room, and I lost it.

It was something I already knew theoretically, but now the harsh, disgusting reality set in: my little five year olds live in a country where mass shootings are so common that they have to prepare for them at school like they are tornadoes or fires.

We have become so accustomed to this, so resigned, that rather than doing anything to actually stop these things, we have just accepted them as a fact of life. Our schools and our communities have gotten used to seeing little children as targets of carnage. We have collectively decided that we would rather sacrifice a few children now and then than do anything that would require taking away anyone's guns.

After Sandy Hook the die was cast. We will keep sacrificing our children to the Moloch of our moral corruption and indifference. It has to stop. If this bothers you, go beyond posting anti-gun memes the day after an attack. Vote and get out the vote for people trying to stop this. Get out into the street and put pressure on the politicians who condone it or who are too cowardly to fight against it. After looking into my children's eyes as they told me how they would hide if a shooter was in their school I know that there is nothing else that I can do and still be capable of living with myself.


Unknown said...

Man, this is rough. I hope these moments are few and far between. -Debbie

Werner Herzog's Bear said...

Thanks. At least we went back to dancing and they seemed less upset than me.

Terry said...

Tragically, it is "normal" to them. Like it was "normal" for us in grade school (I'm a Boomer so a bit older than you) to practice the ludicrous "duck and cover" routine in preparation for possible Russian nuclear bombs that would incinerate us Omahans instantly.

Now the potential, and very real, danger comes from our fellow Americans.

The longer our national nightmare goes on, the more striking to me is the similarity between the Republicans and Tolkien's The One Ring: they, too, are incapable of building or creating anything. They're only capable of destruction and misery.

Tim Lacy said...

So sorry, Jason. I've felt this way too, though I was too proud to let myself cry. - TL