There are no words that haven’t already been said in regards to the recent, horrific mass shootings in Buffalo, Laguna Beach, and Uvalde. So today, I’ll simply direct toward others whose words I have found helpful.
Diana Butler Bass shares a litany from [Episcopal] Bishops United Against Gun Violence and writes that, “Thoughts and prayers can really mean something — if those thoughts and prayers reveal the extent of evil and break our hearts with the love and sorrow of God.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics supports an assault weapons ban and also links to excellent research by Everytown [for Gun Safety], outlining policy changes desperately needed to address the public health danger that is gun violence. It can certainly feel like everything has been politicized; it has been. But there is also data to show how certain policy changes make a difference in saving lives. Learn what they are, and if you feel so led, advocate for them.
Rev. Devon Thomas, UCC pastor in Jeffersonville, Hyde Park, and Bakersfield published a commentary a few days ago about the “social wedge being driven through the heart of our country.” And yes, he writes, that goes for Vermont, too. Among our deepest spiritual temptations in times like these is to retreat in fear or despair. Rev. Thomas suggests that a focus on fixing shared problems, and a refusal to return hate with hate, will get us further down a path worth treading.
May it be so.