“When Human Life Becomes More Vulnerable and Prayer is not Enough”
As a father of three children who are students in Elementary, Middle, and High school, I’m always concerned about the safety of my children and those of other parents. Unfortunately, one never knows for certain if one’s child or the neighbor’s child will come home safely.
The gun crisis in our culture makes life more vulnerable and death more urgent. I do not believe prayer is the sole solution to this cultural tragedy we’re currently facing as a country and people. We can’t just depend on our collective prayers to solve this human dilemma in our culture. Some individuals in our society use prayer as a smokescreen to refrain from taking responsible (legal) actions. It’s probably incorrect to state that gun violence has increased in our society because we removed God and prayer in the classroom. It is also not true to argue that the cause of the gun dilemma is the result of the American society moving more towards the left or it becoming more secular. Recent research on gun laws and individual freedom in other Western countries contradict this thesis. Perhaps, our problem is that our lawmakers and the institutions that support light and flexible gun control laws prioritize money and ideology over (the sacredness of) human life.
The gun crisis in our culture is a moral problem that urges us as a people to take ethical actions for the preservation of life. We must hold our legislators acountable to pass stricter gun laws to safeguard life in this country, and enforce more life-centered regulations in the ownership and selling of weapons. Similarly, we must pressure our lawmakers to act morally and ethically when making political and legal decisions about gun laws and ownership behind closed doors.
America’s Children and The Memory of Tomorrow
What kind of memory this country is constructing for the children and youth of this generation?
We’re raising children today who will become the adults of (America’s) tomorrow, whose childhood in contemporary American life is masked by tragic fear, terror, and gun violence. Our contemporary children are the memory of tomorrow. What will they remember about their America?
They will remember their American childhood as a zone of death and a country that did not care about the life of its children and the preservation of human life.
They will remember their American schools, theaters, churches, temples, social clubs, marketplaces, and any meeting place as unsafe places for them, family members, their classmates or friends.
They will remember America as the country in which places of sanctuary, refuge or shelter were rare to find or did not exist in their childhood.
They will remember America as a nation that shuts its heart to the suffering and pain of its children, and where life is cold and sour.
What a tragic life and traumatic legacy our children today will inherit tomorrow?
What a devastating mental scar that will mark permanently their American experience as both children and adults!
“A voice is heard in Ramah,
mourning and great weeping,
Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted,
because they are no more.”— Jeremiah 31:15