Considering acts of mindless violence, the media seems to want to take the road to mental illness or disability. In the case of the Sandy Hook school shootings or the Portland, Oregon mall or the Colorado movie theater, the words 'schizophrenia' and 'autism' have been used a lot. These words encapsulate a spectrum of symptoms, but many schizophrenics and people with an autism related condition such as Asperger's Syndrome are not violent, so I don't see these conditions as much of an explanation, no matter how convenient. Also, consider the violent criminals who are not mentally ill. Charles Manson was never diagnosed with a mental illness. A borderline personality? Another very wide spectrum, more like a rainbow. In the scramble of trying to explain the reason behind senseless acts, we may have forgotten that we're dealing with a contradiction in terms. If something is senseless, reason can't be used as the most accurate yardstick. Nothing can fix it, and this is a way of avoiding the inevitable despair and acceptance when a whole country is asking themselves 'why?'
Twenty dead children, with forty parents who are in terrible shock and anguish, not to mention the families of the dead eight adults. If the shooter, a twenty year old young man, had only stayed home and slept late. Only if no guns had been in his house. What was he seeing when he pulled the trigger? Not the frightened, terrified faces of children and the teachers? His own mother? When he entered the school building, he must have seemed like a familiar face. He wasn't a stranger to the staff, but he was carrying four firearms. Why did he want his mother dead? I understand that autistics have a kind of wall around them, not always being able to relate to others emotionally, but why the need to commit such a destructive act? Why would he think this was okay? My mother mentioned that in the deranged minds of these shooters, they want to be famous, notorious, like a Charles Manson or a Jeffrey Dahmer. Their self-esteem is nonexistent, so they want to feel powerful, even if it means taking the lives of children. But the Newtown shooter is now dead, so he can't enjoy his celebrity like a Kardashian and hopefully there is some sense of justice in the After-Life. Maybe I seem angry, and forgiveness is the Christian thing to do, but the loved ones of the victims, I'm sure, are far from forgiveness right now. There has to be some sense to this, right? But I can only speculate on these things, and I'm staring to wonder if we're giving these crazed shooter types too much credit. Do they really think it out? The shooters at Columbine were known to be troubled kids. The movie theater shooter in Colorado gave himself up, probably because he was too much of a coward to take his own life, even if he wanted to be like the Joker. These shooters want to be seen as clever tricksters, when they are only damaged clowns who other people fear and pity. Right now, I'll bet pity is the farthest thing from the minds of the grieving parents and families. The loss is so great, there isn't room for anything else, and rage provides no comfort for a broken heart. I am not a religious person, but I think only God has arms big enough to wrap His love around an entire community, to make the pain bearable enough for the grieving to get on with their lives. Just like Columbine, 9/11, the Amish school shootings, Virginia Tech, and these recent shootings, there is a light trying to get in past the grief and the anguish, this energy coming from our own spirits, who knew love before and will continue to love after, because what else can we do? We're only human.