Monday, 17 December 2012

US must do more to protect its children

In October the head teacher of Sandy Hook Elementary viewed her school as a model, telling the Newtown Bee newspaper in 2010: "I don't think you could find a more positive place to bring students to every day."

Once more the world had to face a drama in a school. The assault on Sandy Hook school in Newtown, Connecticut, by Adam Lanza, 20, who shot dead his mother before driving to the school in her car then killing twenty children and six women before taking his own life.

Since Barack Obama has been President for the fourth time he had to come together to comfort a grieving community torn apart by a mass shooting.  The fourth time they’ve hugged survivors.  The fourth time they’ve consoled families of victims and in between, there have been an endless series of deadly shootings across the country, almost daily reports of victims, many of them children, in small towns and big cities all across America -- victims whose -- much of the time, their only fault was being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Strangely enough in the previous case it were Christian conservatives who opposed any limitation of weapon carriage. Though more than once voice said the American people could not tolerate this anymore, no severe political action was taken becaus the firarmslobby was too strong to resit.

"These tragedies must end." Obama is also convinced. President Obama speaking at at an inter-faith vigil in Newtown, Mr Obama said he would use the powers of his office to prevent a repeat of the tragedy. "We will be told that the causes of such violence are complex, and that is true.  No single law -- no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world, or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society."

Obama drew on Scripture and spirtuality to comfort grieving families - and a heartbroken nation Sunday night in Newtown where the first funerals, for two of the child victims, will be held today.

Officials say the young man was armed with hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and used a semi-automatic rifle as his main weapon. He was also carrying two handguns, and a shotgun was recovered from a car.

The complex causes of gun crime "can't be an excuse for inaction", Obama said. " And you must know that whatever measure of comfort we can provide, we will provide; whatever portion of sadness that we can share with you to ease this heavy load, we will gladly bear it.  Newtown -- you are not alone."

"We know that there were other teachers who barricaded themselves inside classrooms, and kept steady through it all, and reassured their students by saying “wait for the good guys, they’re coming”; “show me your smile.”
And we know that good guys came.  The first responders who raced to the scene, helping to guide those in harm’s way to safety, and comfort those in need, holding at bay their own shock and trauma because they had a job to do, and others needed them more.
And then there were the scenes of the schoolchildren, helping one another, holding each other, dutifully following instructions in the way that young children sometimes do; one child even trying to encourage a grown-up by saying, “I know karate.  So it’s okay.  I’ll lead the way out.”

In the face of indescribable violence, in the face of unconscionable evil, many in that small town have looked out for each other, and have cared for one another. With such tragedies we always also can see that there is shown love and caring for each other.

But once more it is time that the Americans open their eyes and see what damage weapons can do and how much more important it is to come up for the weak and safeguard people from the pisuse of those killing 'playtoys'.

Often we see American adults couraging theid kids playing with weapons and exercising shooting. The first replay they give is the freedom of people and the second amendment in the constitutional law.
Did they ever wonder how far freedom goes and what it really is?

Today that nation should be left with some hard questions.
It is realy high time to consider if it is wearth to continue to sell weapons so freely.

Would the American government now at last take steps to safeguard their children?

Obama continued his speech:
"Someone once described the joy and anxiety of parenthood as the equivalent of having your heart outside of your body all the time, walking around.  With their very first cry, this most precious, vital part of ourselves -- our child -- is suddenly exposed to the world, to possible mishap or malice.  And every parent knows there is nothing we will not do to shield our children from harm.  And yet, we also know that with that child’s very first step, and each step after that, they are separating from us; that we won’t -- that we can’t always be there for them.  They’ll suffer sickness and setbacks and broken hearts and disappointments.  And we learn that our most important job is to give them what they need to become self-reliant and capable and resilient, ready to face the world without fear.
And we know we can’t do this by ourselves.  It comes as a shock at a certain point where you realize, no matter how much you love these kids, you can’t do it by yourself.  That this job of keeping our children safe, and teaching them well, is something we can only do together, with the help of friends and neighbours, the help of a community, and the help of a nation.  And in that way, we come to realize that we bear a responsibility for every child because we’re counting on everybody else to help look after ours; that we’re all parents; that they’re all our children.
This is our first task -- caring for our children.  It’s our first job.  If we don’t get that right, we don’t get anything right.  That’s how, as a society, we will be judged."

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