I am a mother.
I am a spouse.
I am going to school to become a teacher.
I am so anti-violence I would rather kneel in prayer and allow a shooter to kill me rather than fight. There are a number of reasons for this; the first thing that comes to mind is an experience I had as a teen. I was home sick from school and I was watching TV. Suddenly a news report came on and I was mesmerized.
October 6, 1981. During a victory parade celebrating Egypt's crossing of the Suez Canal, Live TV showed the assassination and aftermath of Anwar Sadat. Loved (by the West) and hated (by the Middle Easterners--including his own country) for his peace negotiations with Israel called the Camp David Accords, Sadat was targeted by an insurgent fatwa. (There is speculation that his successor and VP Mubarak orchestrated the attack, however he was injured so...?) I watched completely stunned as grenades were thrown into the crowd and gunmen opened fire with what appeared to be machine guns (I do not know guns, I have no idea). People were screaming. I saw a man with half an arm. I know I saw other things but they suddenly cut the feed.
I started crying.
By the time my mother came home I was a hot mess. I was sobbing my eyes out and my mother had difficulty understanding me. It took me about three or four tries to finally get the story out. I'm not even sure my mother even knew who Anwar Sadat was (she probably did, but I know I was a wreck!). I don't remember anything else.
I was sixteen (barely). Ever since then I have hated violence of every kind. (Don't ask about the Zombie fetish, I don't get it either. Maybe because it's make-believe?) I don't like guns and fortunately for me, my husband doesn't give a rat's behind about them either. I do not begrudge others use and skill with guns. I appreciate it, actually. I also appreciate those that can handle firearms and are not afraid to use them. I cannot. I will not. Ever.
Also, I suffer from clinical depression. This means I need medication just to function. I have enough Faith. I have enough confidence. I just have a tweak in my system that makes me unable to cope. You can argue with me about this but I won't listen. I know what I am dealing with; I have had many years to come to terms with this illness. (Yes, I consider Depression an Illness the likes of Diabetes or Asthma.)
I was similarly devastated by my visit to the Nazi Germany Concentration Camp in Dachau, Germany. I find the treatment of humans toward each other sometimes so distressing I want to just fold into myself and cry my guts out. When I think about genocide or mass murder I am seriously distressed.
After 9/11 I had issues. I was thrown into a depression that took months to recover from. I realize that many others, the whole nation even, struggled so that's not surprising. The shooting incident on Friday has about destroyed me, except this time I feel energized to DO something, but what? I want to believe in people. I want to see more good than bad.
The thing is, I know why bad things happen. We are not being "abandoned" by God. He allows us all agency. This agency can be used for good deeds or bad ones. We get to choose. We do not get to choose the consequences of behavior. Also, there is no guarantee that all good behavior will be rewarded (except with peace of mind and other "internal" type "blessings") or bad behavior punished until The End. This does not mean I like it, or even accept it. I am devastated by the way humans treat each other. I don't understand it. I will never understand it.
Humanity should be about love, not hate. Religion should teach love and tolerance. Religion should never Ever EVER be an excuse for murder or intolerance. My opinion, of course, but this is my blog so...
I think I have come up with something to do to exert some of my excess energy and show my feelings about this event. I'll post more later.