David and I spent the weekend in South Carolina, staying with my family and attending his mother’s birthday party. Before I left, I had planned to post an article somewhat more diverting than this one, but after crying my way through Friday night, I thought that we could wait on that.
Although I watched a few hours of news on Friday night and Saturday morning, I’ve been carefully turning off the TV since then. We see a snippet here or there, and that’s all I can handle. What meaningful commentary can be made on those twenty bright morning faces, ready to sing the ABC song and color pictures? How to make sense of twenty full juice boxes and twenty empty little pairs of mittens?
As a nation, we have some serious conversations ahead of us. In the beginning of our country’s history, everyone was armed. Little boys walked their sisters and younger brothers to school carrying guns to protect them from wild animals and (apologies in advance) Indians, but they never thought of shooting their classmates. Today, Israel and even Switzerland have more guns per capita than we do, but they don’t have the mass shootings that we’re seeing more and more. Why? What is wrong with us—psychologically, spiritually, socially—that we, as a society, want to kill big groups of total strangers?
I have no answers today, but I will say that some of the opinions offered by the talking heads should never have been spoken. Only one of many is the effort to link this tragedy to Asperger’s Syndrome. First of all, they do not know whether the shooter had Asperger’s or not; his brother just said he had some sort of problem. Secondly, people with Asperger’s are not more violent than anyone else. Although children with this problem do become frustrated easily, it’s blow-up-and-done. This young man had his plan meticulously mapped out, and it took a relatively long time to execute. Obviously not a typical Asperger’s meltdown. Since one in 88 children born today has some form of autism (see the Autism Speaks website), is it really healthy for the media to be creating a public hysteria that our children are a bunch of ticking time bombs? This is malpractice at its worst.
In happier news, David’s mom turned 87 yesterday, and her family threw her a big party at Kittiwake Baptist Church in Lexington, SC. We had a wonderful time seeing a lot of beloved people that we only get to visit once a year or so. Life goes by far too quickly, and I’m always amazed at how many more people are in our family! After the Connecticut tragedy, it was healing to see about a dozen little ones running around, singing, and getting smeared with chocolate frosting. Of course, I was chosen to cut the cake! Come to think of it, the room was full of diabetics, so it was bound to be one of us. It smelled heavenly, but I can honestly say that I didn’t even lick my fingers.
Speaking of which, I’m making a serious effort to walk every day and cut back on “unnecessary” eating. I started walking the first week in November, so it’s not such a big deal anymore to jump up out of my chair at work and take a turn around the park. David’s doctor recently told him in no uncertain terms that he must lose weight to control his blood pressure, so he is also walking every day. We had planned to get a treadmill with our Christmas gift money, but David’s January closing was cancelled, so now we will just pay bills and pray for good weather. Beginning a serious weight loss regimen in November is insane, by the way. I heartily recommend January instead, so that you can be in sync with the rest of the nation. I’ll keep you up to date on our progress. Film at eleven.
Credit: The mitten picture was found on Google Images, from the website Miss PenPen: http://misspenpen.blogspot.com/2012/04/mittens-kittens-flitting.html