When Words Of Comfort Don’t Seem To Be Enough
Just some thoughts on this dreary, cold day.
It is hard when loved ones die from disease or old age. It is horrible when loved ones die from an accident. It is devastating when loved ones are killed by others. Those left behind always seem to have a feeling of guilt, but that’s mainly from being helpless. I’ve said on this blog many times that death does not discriminate. It doesn’t care about age, gender, or the color of skin. Money might buy medical care to extend life, but it cannot bribe death when the time comes. That sense of helplessness runs deep.
When loved ones are killed, people look to the justice system. The only comfort that comes from that is the sense of juries and judges acknowledging right from wrong. However, what juries hear and see is painted by their own hearts and minds. People are not computers programmed to process data without bias.
There are times when there are no words sufficient in bringing comfort to the hurting, to those who have lost loved ones, the ill, the tired. There are times when I feel that there must be more – something I can do, and not merely say. If I had the power of resurrection, I would walk through the hospitals, the morgue, the graveyards, calling out names and saying, “Come forth.”
Today, because I feel that there are no words sufficient to directly comfort the living, I will address their loved ones who have gone on. Read the rest of this entry
When A “Toy” Isn’t A Toy
We have seen their faces, heard their names, another senseless loss of life. Gone before their time and all for holding a “toy”. As you will see I use “s” when referring to these “toys”. What I’m talking about are air soft and BB guns/rifles. This is the story of 3:
1. October 2013; Andy Lopez, 13, of Santa Rosa CA was walking to a friend’s home and was carrying a look-a-like AR air soft “toy” and an air soft pistol “toy”. The pistol was tucked into his waist band and while this one had an orange tip, it was not visible due to being tucked into his waistband. The officers approached from a safe distance from behind and used their vehicle as a shield. They instructed Andy to put down the weapon but instead Andy turned toward the officers and, according to the officers, started to raise the “toy”. 8 shots rang out with 7 of them striking Andy. Most were non-fatal injuries except for the shot to the chest.
2. August 5, 2014; John Crawford III, 22, Fairfield, Ohio. John was out with a friend and was in a Wal-Mart store when he picked up a look-alike assault air rifle “toy” from one of the sporting good aisles of the store. The “toy” had been removed from the box by an unknown person and was not loaded. While he carried the “toy” around a Ronald Ritchie approached store management and then called 911 with a story, in fact it is filled with outright lies. He claimed that Crawford was waving the rifle around and pointing it at children and several times told the 911 dispatcher that he was loading ammunition into the rifle. You can listen to the 911 call and the store’s video which have been timed together.
New California Gun Law the First of Its Kind in the U.S.
Good job, Richard Martinez and Peter Rodger.
You might remember the names, or they might sound familiar. In May 2014, Christopher Martinez was killed by Elliot Roger in a spree that took the lives of 6 others and wounded 13. Family members of Isla Vista killer, Elliot Rodger, had reported their concerns to Santa Barbara law enforcement after the 22-year-old posted videos of himself threatening violence online. In response, Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s deputies visited Rodger’s apartment just three weeks before the murders and performed a police procedure known as a “welfare check.” The deputies found Elliot to be polite and amenable.
The deputies did not know then that Elliot legally owned three handguns, nor had they viewed the threatening videos that Elliot made.
Richard Martinez, Christopher’s dad, was very vocal about gun violence, saying:
“Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA. They talk about gun rights. What about Chris’ right to live? When will this insanity stop? When will enough people say stop this madness? We should say to ourselves, not one more.”