The Gun Lobby, Tragedy And Ecopsychology

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Ethical leaders follow high principals for the common good. Photo by Christyl Rivers

With heavy hearts, we are asked again to accept a senseless gun massacre, this time in Las Vegas.

Americans are paying our government leaders to allow guns owned by madmen to kill innocent Americans. Sure, there are plenty of reasons to own a gun, many are legitimate. But these are emergency times of crisis. We have global climate crises, unrest, and increasing violent human rights crises. All of which are increasing refugee crises, and with it, global conflict.

Everything affects everything else. Our grandparents fought for freedom and democracy in the second world war. Perhaps it’s time we honored their sacrifice by demanding regulations and leaders that would emulate the other nearly two hundred nations that don’t have bloody massacres with easily accessible firearms.

Americans kill more victims with more guns than anyone else. People are sick to death of this America First distinction. Write Trump, or your chosen leaders, and say so.

Overwhelming research shows that favoring common sense gun regulations, such as waiting periods, reduction of automatic weapons, or background checks, are favored by most Americans. In other words, we have taxation without representation in Washington.

And now, for your thought provoking Ecopsychology link, here it is. A sense of entitlement that tells a privileged few that only they can accumulate vast arsenals of products made only for the purpose of killing is unfair. Also unfair, are they, whether politicians or industry, who profit, without offering compensation to daily victims and the cost to society in general.

It is unfair for those innocent victims, most of whom just want normal lives. It is unfair to the thousands of hunted trophy animals that most of us wish to protect. It is unfair in the case of militaristic police work, when innocent suspects die without trial, or by a rule of law. It is unfair to women who are threatened and killed daily by partners, (women overwhelmingly have more interest in crafts and family than they do in gun hobbies). It is unfair for any mistreated population: POC, LBGTQ, environmentalists, or any minority. It is unfair for many ecosystems destroyed by lead and other industrial toxins. It is unfair to those of us who are horrified when terrorists overtake a wildlife refuge, or in “new normal” mass shootings, wherein terrorizing men are not exposed as terrorists.

Should we have guns in wild and urban places equally — along with the noise, danger, crowding, costs and divisive relationships they bring?

In view of the billions of people on earth, could there ever be any real justification for allowing a small handful of privileged, white men to “own and bear arms” while the rest of Earth suffers? Is there a possible world wherein ecosystems, wildlife, (already drastically reduced in numbers) can be killed by all of us equally? For example, if you didn’t kill an elephant or lion today, is the man that did do so, a superior man? Is he your equal? Is there a possible world where streets and public spaces, too, are safe for every day citizens?

Perhaps, then, we should re-examine who is entitled, and who is not.

This sounds like those who want oil profits but not costs. This sounds like those who historically sold cigarettes and cancer. This sounds like those who once sold human beings — and by all accounts now sell them still. This sounds like those who poach and traffic wildlife, or who destroy suffering habitats with impunity, and then boast about their power and profits. Then, they charge the rest of us for the full, and often horrifying costs, from Hurricane Katrina to Maria, from Columbine High School, to Las Vegas 2017.

It has been well documented that providing economy and education for females advances sustainable life on earth. What if weapons were policed as effectively as women’s bodies? In Paul Hawken’s new book, Drawdown, he lays out the details of just how injustice and inequality destroy our world while they drive climate disasters. It does not have to be that way.

Privilege is supposed to be granted to those willing to take on the responsibility of what is owed to the greater good. As we all are world citizens, our unified responsibility is to call out injustice, of every kind.

Written by

Ecopsychologist, Writer, Farmer, Defender of reality, and Cat Castle Custodian.

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