Jekyll Island Beach 2012

Jekyll Island Beach 2012
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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas 2012

The Rogue Speaks:

I learned today that Avi Richman, one of the children who was killed in Sandy Hook, was the daughter of one of my son-in-law's former graduate students at the University of Arizona.  Yes, it is a very small world and an unexpected sorrow can touch any and all of us with the speed of a bullet.

The first line of my poem is the prompt Jenny gave us for this Saturday Centus, and it is the basis for my offering this week--the prompt, plus 100 words:

On the thirteenth day of Christmas,
Here in our nation,
In quiet Sandy Hook
There was no celebration.
The stockings had hung
By the chimney with care,
But some little children
Had never been there.
To open their presents
And chatter with glee.
A gunman had killed them
And shattered the tree
That had stood all bejeweled
With tinsel and light,
But there was no Santa
To come in the night.
The country was weeping
And wondering why
Those sweet little babies
All had to die.
They’re now all in Heaven,
In God’s tender care.
Maybe one day
We will meet with them there.
America is unique in the world for its fascination with guns.  It has the highest gun ownership per capita rate than any other nation.  There are 9 guns for every 10 people in this country.  Why?????


Pondside said...

I don't understand it at all. How could a household in a beautiful and peaceful town contain three of these deadly weapons? Why, indeed?

Viki said...

I want to go on my blog and spew the hatred I feel for guns of all kind. If I read one more person say "guns don't kill people, people do" I think my head might explode. Is our country ever going to learn, I wonder.

Naperville Now said...

Why, indeed. I pray the laws may change and that all children will have a chance to go to school in safety.

Kris Osage said...

I couldn't face writing on this terrible, senseless event but you did it so beautifully.I would say something to make Viki's head explode but she already did. I think we have neglected the mentally ill in our country and that is the core of the problem.
Very well written Judie ;) !!!

Judie said...

Here's something for you all to think about--A man boarded a plane with a shoe bomb, and now we all have to take off our shoes at the airport. That is because of ONE incident--ONE!

Now consider just how many mass shootings have occurred in this country in the last 10 years, and how many people have died because of mentally ill people who either have access to guns, or legally purchase them. On this day, they still can. What's wrong with this picture?

One more thing--I cannot think of one single incident that would call for an ordinary person to have an assault rifle. And if one is attempting to thwart an attack in one's home, just how many guns can one person fire at the same time???

Kelly Sedinger said...

My position has always been "I personally don't want anything to do with guns because I find them scary, but I respect their legal availability." I have now officially changed my mind. They're awful, awful things and we'll never be truly civilized while we fetishize them to this degree. I find it incredibly odd that so many in our society bleat about the Sixth Commandment while also bleating about the equally holy status of the Second Amendment, which enshrines our right to own tools whose only purpose is to break that Sixth Commandment.


JJ said...

I learned today that one of my neighbors worked at that school before moving to Florida. She knew many of the people involved. What a tragedy.

In answer to your last question, the per capita rate is so high because that is the way our nation was originally settled. In other countries, like Great Britain for example, they never had the guns to begin with.

Jo said...

I will never be at peace with your 2nd amendment ... it was valid in 1791 when one had to fear the British, and feed themselves with game, and protect their land ... times have changes and so must your country's need for such weapons ...
Beautifully written Judie, deeply respectful, and we all, share in this tragic loss of such innocent lives and innocence of the times ...

Judie said...

You are right, JJ. The Brits fought for their country with swords. It is hard to be a mass murderer by wielding a sword. One is liable to be struck on the head with a mace.

Gattina said...

You are the first American blogfriend in my Google reader who talks about this tragedy ! It's just as if people don't dare to say their opinion. Nobody in Europe understands the love for guns amongst the American citizens. It's hard to buy a beer for a 20 year old one in some States but a machine gun he can have like a cookie. The Far West is long gone and people like Billy the Kid, Calamity Jane etc, shouldn't exist anymore. There are no Indians waiting behind a traffic light to be shot, so why the need of guns ? To protect what ?? I think that only weak people feel stronger with an arsenal of weapons at home ! In Texas especially there are the most of gun fans ! Protect freedom ?? what freedom at such a price !

Joann Mannix said...

Hi Judie,

I hope all is well in your new corner of the world. I've slipped under the blog radar in an effort to wholeheartedly pursue publication. It's a tough racket, that's for sure.

I am just devastated at this senseless horror. Devastated.

I will admit my husband has guns and is a pretty serious marksman. But, he too, believes the gun laws and the ease of availability are ridiculous. The gun laws and practices are outrageous and must be changed.

But we also cannot forget the other factor in this heartbreaking tragedy. Our appalling lack of help for the mentally ill. Far too many slip between the cracks because of a lack of resources.

Over 30 years ago, I lost a classmate and a dear friend in a fire bombing. A seriously schizophrenic man whose mother had spent a lifetime trying to get him the proper help, strolled into a Winn Dixie grocery store, threw gasoline on the cashiers and people standing in line to checkout and lit a match to them. My friend had stopped to buy a Coke on her way to work. The photo in the paper the next day, showed a wall right next to the store that the Fire Bomber had spray painted the day before. He'd written over and over again, "Help Me."

We have fallen down in more than one way. It's time to make it right.

Dick Rink said...

Hi Judie,

Here in the Netherlands it’s forbidden to have a weapon. Only when you have a gun license you may posses a gun. To get a gun license you have to do several tests, there are a lot of rules and you are registered. Only marksmen and hunters can apply for a license. Off course there is illegal possesion of weapons. And it’s no guarantee from preventing these horrible events to happen, but every life that is spared by applying rules about weapon possesion counts.

My thoughts go out to the family of those poor little childeren. There is no way to imagine what they are going through.

lissa said...

it's sad to read this and knowing what you're saying is true makes it harder to understand why it even happened.

I hope those families find some peace somehow.

ChrisJ said...

There are many in Canada who would have our gun laws be more like yours. They are demented!

Someone pointed out - Laurence O'Donnell maybe - that the second amendment gave people the right to carry the only guns available - muskets. Things have changed and so should the law.

I hope that this time things will really change; it might bring some small measure of peace to the families.

BECKY said...

I so agree with you, Judie. NOBODY needs machine guns, etc...

And wouldn't it be wonderful to live in a country as beautiful and safe as The Netherlands? I envy you, Mr. Rink!

Jenny said...

Aww Judie.

This both sickens and saddens me.

What a frightening world.

I hope you're doing okay. Things have been so busy here but you've been on my mind!

Annesphamily said...

My niece Holly in Longmont, CO. has a friend Patty who's nephew James Mattioli died in the Ct. shooting.It is such a sad time here but in time people will forget. I posted the names of people that died on every single floor of the OKC Bombing and not one person could comment that they knew even one name! America is so complacent! It makes me ill and then there are the ones looking to blame God. I was educated in the Catholic schools and we were taught the Three R's, Reading, Religion and Responsibility. If I knew my son was mentally ill and I was planning to send him to get treatment I sure would not buy an arsenal of guns and go practice shooting with him! My point is no one wants to take responsibility for anything they do! Our own government is a prime example. I am way past religion. My hope is in the Lord and I think people don't talk it on their blogs because some are in a dream world and others are afraid to speak up. One extremely kind blogger was attacked by a woman from Australia. She wanted to shut down her blog. Since I am speaking my mind, how dare that person attack America when her country refuses to allow anyone into it unless they are rolling in cash (i.e. celebrities and politicians) Blah! Aack! Yuck! Every single country in this world has its own problems. I never was raised around guns but my hubby was. He owns them and uses them wisely and responsibly. I don't see any easy answers. My heart breaks for these families and ten years from now I know I won't forget but I don't know many others who will remember. So sad.