Weird-Ass Reasons For Why School Shootings Have Become Epidemic

by John Walters

Things I decided to say here so as not to subject it to Twitter followers. I’m just firing off these ideas in any old random way, as if my brain has a bump stock. Comment as you will.

The first and MOST IMPORTANT thing to remember in all of this: guns are the instrument, they are not the causation. I’m all for making guns far more difficult to obtain for persons under age 25 (and completely off-limits to anyone under 21), but guns are not the cause of the epidemic. They simply facilitate it.

Second: I’m 51. A younger person reading this may roll his or her eyes and shoot a GOML, but I’m willing to listen to them if they’re willing to listen to me. Being older doesn’t necessarily make you dumber. In some bizarre and remote cultures, older people are actually considered wise. So, to commence:

1. The Death of Community: In schools, in neighborhoods, everywhere. When  a sense of community dies, individuals get left behind. First, they get lonely. Some get angry. And many no longer feel accountable to anyone else because they really don’t believe that anyone cares about them. Which leads to how community dies…

2. Let’s Begin With Your Smartphone and Your Earbuds: How many young people do you encounter who are just completely disengaged from the actual world in which they are taking part? I’m not blaming them; this is the technological world into which they were raised (in my era, our parents yelled at us for watching too much television).

Still, wearing ear buds more often than not or checking your smart phone when dining out with your family, as just one example, is yet another opportunity to build community that is lost. And finding “community” on line is no substitute for real community.

3. The Internet Has Made America One Big High School: Thirty years ago you cared about maybe being popular inside your high school. Now you post selfies of yourself on Instagram and crave a greater level of fame. It’s almost as if fame, or infamy, is the only satisfaction that will do.

4. The Internet Has Made Us All Narcissists: We’re far more interested in being praised or at least respected on line than we are by our physical neighbors. Again, a disconnect between humanity/reality and what we experience online.

5. The Amazon-ing of Things: You don’t have to go anywhere to get what you want, and you don’t have to have anything except exactly what you already know that you like. Americans, more than any other culture, live a Burger King (“Have it your way”) life style. That’s capitalism doing its job, but the residual effects are a more isolated, more insulated, more spoiled and far more arrogant culture.

We don’t share. We don’t play well with others. We quit if things don’t go our way right away. We care less about doing what’s right than about doing what we want. We’re frankly more selfish and far less compassionate. Again, the destruction of any sense of community.

6. Music: Oh, man, I really do feel old even suggesting this and I’m not even taking aim at rap and hip-hop. What I am suggesting is that music SUCKS now. I mean, the 10th-worst band of my childhood would be headlining any summer festival these days. Jack White (whom I love) is gonna clean up this summer but I guarantee-damn-tee you he doesn’t have one song off his new album that anyone will be humming to themselves a year from now.

Whatever happened to melodies? Whatever happened to music that wasn’t so self-absorbed?

So, yes, this post may put me into the Troglodyte Hall of Fame. But in my heart I feel that all of the above is true. And if you don’t know me and someone referred you to this post, please understand that I am as opposed to Fox News and all it stands for as anyone. And I’m happy to hear from you about this.

2 thoughts on “Weird-Ass Reasons For Why School Shootings Have Become Epidemic

  1. 7. Killing as a recreational pastime. Call of Duty is the fourth best-selling video game franchise of all time.

    8. Lack of belief in a higher power. God help us!

  2. 100% agree with your observations, and #s 7 and 8 above. The “disconnect” with community causing the decline of civilization. As for guns, responsible gun-owning friends are appalled. Polls show most Americans want sane laws. It will only change when the 18th century standards—Electoral College (abolish) and 2A– are updated to 21st century standards. Every individual vote should count. Every gun should be considered a weapon of mass destruction.

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