When events like the Columbine High killings occur, the nation becomes shocked at the depravities that mankind is capable of inflecting on other human beings. To kill all those young men and women in the beginning of their life as adults was shocking, but also sadly, mankind's history has been marked through out with such actions. The fact that the media has been finger pointing as it were at a certain group of entertainment smacks of easy solutions to answers that have no answer... what causes these unspeakable acts of terror.
For those of you who have studied the history of man, these acts of terror are rife throughout our history, from the ancient days of human sacrifice, to the Roman practice of feeding slaves to the lions and making it a public display, to the recent horrors of Nazi Germany and the modern day events in Bosnia. There have been many "justifications" to these acts, whether as Racial purity, the fact that a group believes in a different god, or pure and simple, personal power. In fact, our history is ripe with events that combine all three. The fact that it still happens today is sad, and unfortunately, not unexpected.
In the last few years, similar incidents have occurred where mass shootings have occurred. Several come to mind immediately, though the one that sticks out the most was the killing of several women in Montreal a few years back. Our society gets outraged, stands on their soapbox for a couple of weeks, and then totally forgets about it till the next mass killing occurs. It has become really sad that this pattern continuously repeats itself over and over, and I think it's time that we as a society scream "stop" and come up with solutions before things degenerate out of hand.
So how do we stop it? The first thing is not to jump all over the easy solutions. To prevent a terrible tragedy such as this does not come with easy answers. To point a finger at something and say "this is to blame" accomplishes nothing by coming up with a solution, and only adds to the pain of the people suffering. It's time to look at solutions, not add to our problem by glazing over the facts.
I believe it's time we took a good look at ourselves. The world has become so competitive, so self-centered, that the cracks are starting to appear, and are becoming magnified with each passing day. It starts with our kids, and the responsibilities that we as parents, and adults have towards steering them. Too many times, I see parents who go the easy route, allow their children to run with total freedom, and not keep them in control. Children learn from us, and if they learn that parents don't respect their child enough to take any action if the child has done something wrong, then that child will not only continue to do it, he or she will start doing it outside the home, because the only thing he or she has learned, is that they can "get away with it". You may not think that it's a big thing, but teaching a child to respect himself, and to then respect others, is one of the most valuable things that a parent can do.
It is our responsibility to teach our children. The schools may teach history and math, but as parents, it is our job to teach them morals and values. We both do the same job, in that we prepare the children to enter the adult world, but we are also both failing in that job. Maybe it's time that we took responsibility for our child's actions, and take a more active role.
Our life has got more complicated over the last 15 years, especially with the advent of computers. To some people, who's lives have become increasingly busy, they look for easy solutions to keep the kids entertained. Some park the kids in front of the T.V. while others just bribe their children with candy or give them money to go see a movie. As a parent myself, I sometimes catch myself ignoring my child because I'm to busy on the computer, or I'm watching the T.V. so I can understand the problem some parents go through. But maybe, if we all make a extra effort to look after our children, steer them in the right direction, maybe we can prevent at least one more killing spree. That would make it all worthwhile.
As a parent, I hope to be able to watch over my child as much as possible, especially since he's only 14 months, and looks to me and my wife for guidance. As a parent, I have to set the example, to always show my love and respect for him, and not to take the easy way out and use the T.V. as a babysitter. You hear this all the time, but our children are our future, but maybe it's time to start taking care of the present.