On Wednesday morning, we were once shown again the destruction the use of guns can cause in communities, this time however it happened to be in front of the whole world, as it took place live on TV. Vester Lee Flanagan II took the life of WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and her cameraman Adam Ward.
According to reports, Vester Flanagan who was fired from WDBJ two years prior, also known by his on air name, Bryce Williams wanted to start a race a war. If this is true, this is similar to another tragic event that we saw rock the nation just a few months back involving both gun-violence and racism, when Dylan Roof in Charleston, South Carolina took the lives of nine black people during a church bible study meeting.
I struggled the last two days trying to find an angle to address this matter. On one hand, two innocent lives were lost due to senseless gun violence, but that happens everyday. So then I had to ask myself, what’s the bigger issue here?
Racism was a common factor in both occurrences, but it’s always the elephant in the room when it comes to many if not all our issues in the United States of America.
While racism can be a reason,racism can only do but it so much. Racism can’t kill people, it makes life harder, but the actual physical death of these 11 people was caused by guns and nothing more.
Up until a week ago you could go into your local Wal-Mart and buy an AR-15, this is the world we’re living in, where you could walk into your local department store, and purchase a gun that small militias would use for protection.
So maybe it’s the guns that are the problem? Maybe, if we were as focused on controlling guns the same way we were the control of abortion, illegal drugs, and health care. It’s funny, the argument for controlling all those other social issues is often, the people need to be saved from themselves. There’s a morality behind a lot of the rhetoric to control those matters, but not the same for the most deadly of them all, guns.
Maybe guns don’t kill people – I guess drugs don’t get people high and sex doesn’t lead to babies. Whatever the case is, people will keep dying at the hands of gun violence, and instead of trying to find a way to control the guns, we’ll continue to ask and sometimes justify why. .
R.I.P. Alison Parker, Adam Ward & all the lives lost to senseless gun violence.