Colorado has about 300 days of sunshine, and only about 30 days of completely gray skies. So, when we get overcast conditions and fog like we had these past two days, people seem to be a little bit nutty. It’s eerie when you can’t see the mountains. We are so used to seeing them in the background, guiding our every move, and that when we don’t see them in our line of sight, we are afraid of being lost. Maybe it’s simply a matter of the fog enveloping our brains so we can’t think straight.
Do you think that’s what happened to that young man when he decided to shoot all those people at his college in Oregon? Was it so gray out there that his brain shut down all logical thought? Was he that depressed?
Should we blame his actions on his poor mother? Should we blame it on the world as it is today? Should we blame it on the media for showing these incidents over and over and over again? Should we blame the shoot ‘em up gaming? Should we blame the fog?
It saddens me to think that young twenty-somethings seem to have a harder time coping with the times. We older adults seem to cope with things differently; not always the right way, but we cope. Maybe we lived in a simpler unconnected time, not having computers, cell phones and texting. We actually had to call on party lines and when the long-winded Aunt was on the phone, we had to go over to someone’s house to talk to them face to face. Wow! (Today, however, I do communicate with text to stay in touch, so I’m not completely out of touch, but I still insist on meeting the parents of the children my son hangs out with.)
Maybe the answer for these violent events lies in the fact that we have become so isolated from human contact. Maybe it is the violence we see in movies or TV, or even online with all these realistic shooting games. Maybe death isn’t real to young people. They haven’t come face to face with death. Living humans don’t have a reset button. But, is all this an excuse for violent reaction to things that have gone wrong in one’s life? Do they not have a sense of place in the universe, a profound sense of belonging to something bigger and better? Are they not held responsible for being productive and kind human beings in society? Are they so isolated and self-absorbed that they don’t feel responsible for creating a better world? Why are we so afraid?
I know it’s hard, but somehow we need to teach our children these life lessons. We all need to get out of our own fog and live and create a better world.
Today, as always, I will hug my child and tell him he owes me to become a productive, loving, kind and beautiful human being who cherishes life.