Today I turned on the news and was not told of shots fired in Camden, NJ. Yesterday I did not hear about the shooting death in Philly’s Kensington neighborhood. The day before I did not hear about the shots fired in Chester, PA or the accidental death of a child playing with their parents’ gun. I did not hear them, but they happened. I did not hear them because I am accustomed to it. It is the five-day forecast and the sports highlight reel. I have no connection to it.
This is my problem. In each of those instances a family is in mourning. Friends and acquaintances are shaking their heads sobbing at a life taken too soon. It is my problem and yet I do nothing because what possible difference can I make? I am one voice in a sea of white noise. The noise of podium-pounding talking heads that shout about the Second Amendment but were not there when it was written.
I am one voice in a sea of silence. If I am saying this to myself, then my friends and family are saying it as well. It is pointless to give your point of view even on social media for it is a vacuum that has no exit. Like many others I have become accustomed to speaking but not being heard. I’d rather have the likes than the lives back. I am numb to the screams. I am numb to the cries for help.
I play games that celebrate death. I get extra points for headshots and I cheer when I do because what difference does it make? It’s just a game. Tomorrow I hear about the brutal murder of a family of three. If they only had a shield. If they only had a few hearts left to save them.
I’d like to believe that I have an answer. I’d like to believe that my fellow man will see that there is a problem and fix it. We rant and rave if our phone has a glitch to send a “lol,” yet we have blood in the streets and we balk time after time. Please give me the newest model device but let the 1984 human model die from a bullet.
I don’t have the answer. The world is complex. Yet history tells me that we have the courage to make the hard decisions. Only time will tell if we allow the mob to be corralled to the voices of fools or if it’s time to listen and give a voice to the dead.