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  • Mass Shootings: What can we do?

    Posted on March 25th, 2021 Finster No comments
    I originally posted this to my facebook feed on August 5, 2019. I’m reposting it here because it’s still relevant. 
    I understand why people are upset and angry after another round of horrible mass shootings. I also understand the impetus to blame something, anything for what has happened. I’ve heard video games, guns, Quentin Tarantino, Trump, Fox News, CNN are all to blame.
    My belief is that even if we ban all of these things and pass draconian restrictions on 1st and 2nd amendment rights, we are only treating a symptom of a much bigger problem.
    The problem is an entire generation (maybe multiple generations) of young (usually white) males are giving into nihilism and fatalism. Confronted with the horrible unending suffering that typifies human existence, the importance of finding meaning in our lives becomes ever more important. My heart goes out to not just young males, but young people of all races, genders, identities, that struggle to find meaning and solace.
    As a society and as a nation, we’ve failed them. We’ve done our best to destroy and tear down the institutions that previously provided meaning. We’ve replaced them with counterfeits. We’ve replaced them with an educational system that rejects outliers and for the price of admission, rewards young people with a lifetime of indentured servitude to student loans. We propped up celebrity and whataboutism instead of hard work and personal responsibility.
    When young men reach out for help, they are slapped away, sometimes bitterly. “Check your privilege!”
    In generations past, the antidote for these problems would’ve usually been a church, any church. Unfortunately, like Neitzsche said, “God is dead.” We’ve killed him. So now what?
    Well, they go to those places that are so easy to find in this new age of social media and acceptance. White supremacy, Mens’ Rights Activisim, Antifa, Proud Boys and all the other dark corners of our culture that are more than willing and able to provide a “meaning” for our nation’s wayward souls. Failing that, they turn to suicide and mass homicide.
    I don’t know a good solution to this problem other than for those of us who have found even a shred of purpose in this absurd circus of suffering we call life, to share why we think life is worth living. I think that we need to teach people how to beautify something, anything, in their life. Take something, even if you are the only one who ever sees it or knows it, and beautify it. I think if we do that, and teach others to do it, we can maybe… *maybe* turn back the tide of violence and nihilism that is currently drowning so many.