We get more of what we tolerate

Dear President Trump,

This is super simple, simple enough for a second grader to grasp; 1) people (usually men) sometimes attack and hurt other people; 2) people (usually men) sometimes kill people; 3) people with access to guns are more likely to kill people when they attack them than if they used their fists or a knife or a chair; 4) people with access to automatic weapons are able to kill vastly more people at a time than if they were restricted to conventional guns or fists or knives or chairs, and 5) as was pointed out in the NYT this morning, countries that are ok with their children being killed in mass shootings have ceded all hope of sensible gun legislation.

And now, instead of figuring out how to have fewer guns, you all are talking about churches and stores hiring armed guards. While we all know this wouldn’t solve the problem and would surely exacerbate it, you all would get to make lots more money selling lots more guns and you’d get to instill even more fear, mistrust, and dread in the populace. We get more of what we tolerate and apparently we are willing to tolerate insane levels of gun violence and we are willing to tolerate losing countless more children because the gun lobby, propped up by craven politicians, has convinced enough US citizens that someone’s second amendment rights are more important than children’s lives.

As I write this, the sun is rising and the sky outside my window is a beautiful soft salmony pink. It’s peaceful and calm out there and inside everyone but me is asleep and we are all safe. I’m trying to remember to breathe in fear and disgust and to breathe out peaceful calm resolve. Making some space in my head and heart regularly will probably help me see through this tangled mess better in the future, but just now an awful, twisted thought occurred to me; how would the NRA respond if a man armed with automatic weapons was able to spray gunfire into dozens of people at one of their rallies before he was inevitably killed 20 times over by return gunfire? What if some of the attendees brought their young sons or daughters and they were among the dead?

May we keep our children safe.
May we make the world a happy place for children.
May we value our children’s health over profit.
May we reset our priorities to truly take care of children.

Tracy Simpson

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