May 26, 2022

Say “Goodbye” to your Little Friend—Cartoons & Guns don’t belong Together.

How’s your mental health today?

I am not sure what answer is a good one.

I think none.

If you aren’t talking about gun violence today,

then you are contributing to the problem of normalizing its existence.

“What are you going to be when you grow up?”

Nineteen sweet school kids from Texas will never know.

Lives wasted. And for what?

Pride? Power? Politics?

It’s time to start talking.

If you have children, talk to them about it.

If you have parents, talk to them about it.

Start talking.

Care without comment is care-less.

Compassion without action is self-centered.

I live in Idaho, and have children in school in Texas.

One was witness to a shooting in Dallas.

Another had a shooting occur in his building garage while he slept upstairs.

Two have had friends riddled with bullets: One maimed. The other murdered.

“What’s up with young adult depression,” you ask?

There is a playful sign on the door at the Boise airport that reads, “Say Goodbye to your Little Friend,” with a cartoon and a gun.

A cartoon and a gun!

Last week, an alert came from our high school, of a precautionary lockdown. A nearby school had a scare. It turned out to be nothing…

But not nothing.

Helicopters landed on the highway, 12-year-olds hid under desks, and SWAT teams ran through classrooms screaming “get your hands up.”

That’s not nothing.

That’s trauma.

And you know how you heal trauma?

You start by talking about it.

And if you don’t, you perpetuate it.

“What are you going to do with this one wild and precious life?”

wondered the late great saint of a poet Mary Oliver.

Not what are you going to think

What are you going to do?

Are you going to wonder about the mental health crisis in our young and old alike? Or are you going to DO something about it?

Start talking. Talking is a place to start.

Our care is careless unless we speak up.


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