No Where to go. No Where to Hide.
Ted Folkert – August 5, 2019
We can’t describe it because we haven’t lived it. We read about it. We see it on the tube. But we haven’t lived it. We haven’t walked for hundreds of miles with our loved ones in tow, carrying whatever few personal items we can carry. We haven’t stood in line for hours and days waiting for our turn to beg for a chance for food, shelter, clothing, employment, education, healthcare, community, and all the other necessities and elements of human life. We haven’t felt so desperate for basic survival that we would consider such uncertainty, such discomfort, such pain and suffering. We can talk about it and think we understand it, but we haven’t lived it. We have no realization of the empty feeling that must occupy the minds of these thousands of would-be immigrants. We have no sympathy or feeling of responsibility in making room for those who have no comfortable life, no assurance of decent living standards, no hope for survival and opportunity for their children and other loved ones.
What evil thoughts must control the mindset of anyone who would just open fire and murder these helpless people seeking refuge? What evil thoughts must control the mindset of someone to open fire and murder innocent people because of the color of their skin or their status in life? How do they get so overwhelmed with the idea that there is a threat imposed upon those of us who have all these basic standards of living?
The reasons that drive these asylum seekers come under the heading of what I call the big three – helplessness, hopelessness, and despair. One of these conditions would be more than most of us could endure, but all three at once is what these desperate people must endure. They are not thieves, murderers, and rapists as our president declares. They are not seeking asylum so they can steal, rob, plunder, murder, or rape. They are just hungry, scared, and seeking a life worth living for themselves and their loved ones.
And our president, whose name I hate to mention, encourages racism, encourages violence against immigrants, uses any means available to deter or eliminate immigration. And his family members were immigrants, as were mine, and as were all our family members. We are a country of immigrants seeking a better life. It seems we have a responsibility to accept as many as possible instead of turning them away at the border without even the effort to determine if they are worthy of entry into our country.
As Pete Buttigieg stated recently, our president has some culpability and responsibility for these disastrous actions against asylum seekers. The frequency has increased significantly due to his careless banter which instills criminal acts on the part of his brain-washed supporters.
And now, as a result of our unprotective policies and the blasphemous statements of our pathetic president, and with the support of the right-wing conservatives who follow his protectionist traits and actions through their vociferous and misguided messages, he incites violence on the part of, mostly-young, misguided, ignorant, and/or mentally deranged provocateurs to murder and maim innocent people in mass-murder episodes, making all of us feel it unsafe to go anywhere. These sad events used to come about per decade – then, per year – then, per month – and now we get them daily – and, why? In just recent years we have had disasters at Charleston, San Diego, Pittsburg, Las Vegas, El Paso, and Dayton. It seems unsafe to go to a mall or to any entertainment venue. Any mother or father must be afraid for their children to leave the house. What a way to live – and primarily due to an ignorant, self-absorbed, narcissistic, uneducated, misguided, misinformed, racist president, a president who was elected, although he did not receive more votes in favor of his election than against. And, therein lies our undemocratic system.
The widespread dissemination of erroneous information is obvious to most of us as the biggest culprit of these sad episodes, but an even bigger culprit is guns, guns, and more guns – pistols, rifles, assault rifles, shot guns, and automatic weapons – weapons with multiple rounds and devices to enable rapid fire with one pull of the trigger. We are the only country in the world with more guns than people. We are the only country with weapons of mass destruction available for anyone to buy regardless of intent or mental condition. They can be bought online legally. Why does anyone need a gun with rapid fire, with a magazine holding dozens of rounds of ammunition? Obvious answer – to kill people. Automatic weapons are not made for hunting. They are made for killing people.
And, why do our laws render us unprotected from the harm of deranged or angry people? The answer is obvious – the National Rifle Association – the NRA. They buy many of our politicians who, although they will deny it to their death, are available to the highest bidder. And that highest bidder is the NRA, which organization is funded by most of the avid gun owners in America. Most of their members are game hunters who join because they feel associated with the gun mindset. The NRA is funded, not only by the hunting community, but to a large scale by the gun and ammunition manufacturers, who also provide campaign finance for our legislators. So, how can we expect protection from harm when we are outbid by those who make and distribute the weapons which fall into the hands of those who wish to harm us?
Now, there is an oxymoron for you.
Apparently, our craving for murderous weapons must have been exacerbated by the wild-west movies we watched all our lives from childhood on up. These gunslingers are portrayed as heroic, brave, good guys and bad guys. They are made out to be heroic and admired by all the viewers. As kids we walked around with our toy six guns on our belts. Apparently, this trend continues for some deranged people among us. We see it now every time we go to the movies or turn on the TV. We see explosions, guns firing – bam, bam, bam, bam, bam. Single shots are no longer satisfactory, we need rapid fire and huge explosions, otherwise it doesn’t trip our trigger. We see people being killed with every type of weapon imaginable and for every cause imaginable – the bad guys getting killed and sometimes the good guys getting killed. If we don’t see enough gunfire and murder, we feel the urge to switch to another channel.
How do we stop this?
Well, we can’t.
But what we can do is start stopping it. We can ban assault weapons and make them unlawful to buy or to own. We can require all owners of such to turn them in and be reimbursed for the cost. We can require stringent background checks prior to gun sales. We can ban the sale of guns by anyone except authorized dealers who must comply with stringent rules enacted and who face loss of authorization to sell upon any violation of the law.
Other methods which could alleviate such episodes could include more concern for those who seem bullied, outcast, emotionally upset, or expressing tendencies to harm others. This would require family cooperation and neighborhood cooperation, as well as observance and acknowledgement by educational administrators who may have awareness of such mental states.
We must deal with the big three – helplessness, hopelessness, and despair. These conditions can occur with the bad guys, but they can also exist with those who need a helping hand, the immigrants. These conditions are not uncommon, and they are recognizable and treatable. They should be acknowledged for the benefit of the afflicted and for the benefit of any possible victim from the results of unmanageable frustration.
And if you don’t buy all this hyperbole, I’ll meet you at the OK corral and we can just shoot it out.