Children are resilient?

One of the ridiculous, perhaps even criminal notions repeated by adults is

children are resilient.

Really? Then why are adults so screwed up?!

The invocation of CAR (children are resilient) is really just a way to push off the truth–any victim of crime needs a lot of help. In fact we need:

Consistent and patient counselors and supporters

A structured sense of personal value

A sense of personal safety

Help with bad dreams and worse memories

Years to ask the question why?

Safe community

Knowledge and truth–especially the reassurance that being a victim is not our fault.

Someone to fight for us.

Prayer. Lots of prayer.

I think with this list most of us can be resilient. Without these supports–the wounds deepen and the road is lonely and painful indeed.

Don’t make the myth of CAR an excuse for neglecting the quiet pain of the wounded–we all need to know we are not alone.

We all need a Defender.

When We Look Away

How could any sentient person suggest that the Sandy Hook massacre was fake?

When I see the pictures of the victims I know that their families are lost in a sea of grief and pain. Not only do they miss their loved ones, they are caught in a vicious web of the beautiful life taken and the bloody end.

Yes. The pictures are there–a crime scene where there should have been snack time. The reality of what it takes to rob a person of her life with a deadly spray of bullets.

If we really want to make our families safer we must face the bodies of our dead.

And perhaps face the cost of our pornography of violence.

Memorial Stones

We live in a party culture. We buy things on time. We are more likely to joke about the grim reaper on Halloween than face the devastation of death–especially tragic, violent death.

This year some of my friends lost family members. At least one death was a homicide. Lives were changed forever and I know that my friends carry their grief. I carry it with them.

I posted the report for this blog because I have been thinking about a baby girl named Toryn Buckman. She was brutally tortured and murdered. Just a baby.

Someone out there mourns for this little one, but can any of us face the statistics? Several thousand children die each year as the result of child abuse in the US alone.

Any country that is so dangerous for children is…not safe for anyone.

Memorial Words

The words are familiar, the voices quavering–

a table before mine enemies

Psalm 23 at the memorial for children who should have been safe at school.. What do we do with our grief? With Christmas? With all those presents for the fallen?

I have been praying for the Krims. I knew this holiday season would be terribly hard for them. Now I have this image in my mind–20 homes without their babies.

I keep thinking-they were six, they were six, they were just little.

Yes. I know some were seven. Seven years is long enough to fall in love with a bright light in the world and long enough to know that the dark has grown darker with each light extinguished.

These people will never be the same.
We should never be the same.

Yes. I know that each death hurts and the hurt is the more unrelenting because it was so cruel.

Cruel. Cruel like our enemies. Cruel like Herod ordering the murder of babies. A king who murders children?
This table set for us in the presence of…

Our enemies.
Chief among them, death itself.

We forget sometimes that the baby in the manger is the Man on the cross.

In the presence of our enemies.
He dies
To set this table where light cannot be snuffed out–
No matter what

A History of Violence

Yesterday an entire community woke up feeling safe and went to bed knowing the truth–no one is safe.

When we examine mass killings in America the list is chilling without the quotidian descriptions of domestic murders. When I read these articles on our history of violence what struck me was how incomplete the lists were.

I found several articles but none mentioned the tragedy at the Amish schoolhouse several years ago. The story of a methodical murder of children at school? Worth remembering.

And now we have Sandy Hook. I hate these stories. Most of us do. But what I find almost as disturbing is how quickly we go back to our Christmas parties and meme gathering.

Sometimes it does seem as though we are more pro-active about spreading urban legends than the truth.

I understand our desire to play the numbers–immediately after the tragedy I heard and read several reporters say–these events are rare.

I seem to have missed the bend in history when the NRA needed more public advocacy than school children.

We have a big problem. A deadly,escalating association between power and slaughter, the desire to exact a terrible revenge on children and the need for fame?

Can it be that our culture of entertainment violence has collided with real violence and a quest for celebrity? Do any of us dare face the possibility that this is the monster we have created? Nurtured? Then allowed to roam our schools, malls, concerts and cinemas while we idly click our remotes looking for something to distract us from a gathering darkness?