By Joe Darby
My friends, we must fact the fact. It’s part of the world we live in and there is absolutely nothing we can do about it.
Mass murder, whether the weapons are automatic rifles, vehicles, airplanes or bombs, will be part of our society for a long time. Whether the perpetrator is a hate-filled Muslim jihadist, a white supremacist looney, a left-wing fanatic like the man who shot U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise or a twisted lone-wolf killer like the Las Vegas shooter, it’s going to continue.
Who in the world would have thought that the next mass killer would be a 64-year-old man who lives in a retirement community? We expect most of the killers to be a angry young men. Now we have to start worrying about senior citizen killers too?
And as I said, there’s nothing we can do about it. If we tripled the size of our police forces and placed an officer on every downtown corner, we still could not stop these massacres. The bad guys know exactly when and where they will strike next. We have no clue as to the time and place.
I’m sure that good police investigative and undercover work has in fact stopped many nefarious plans of mass killings. But there are so many of these people out there that we can’t stop them all, that’s my point. And there are so many copycat killers yet to be heard from.
I think now that residents of any large city are at risk. My daughters live in the New Orleans area and I worry about them. The chances of anyone actually ending up as the target of a mass killer must statistically be quite small, but that doesn’t stop us from worrying about it.
So far, to my recollection, smaller communities like Natchitoches have not been the target of terrorism. But that doesn’t mean it can’t happen.
Remember the fear and apprehension that all Americans went through after 9-11? Our lives had changed. We had our society pre-9-11 and post-9-11. Two different worlds. Anyway, after a while, when the terrorists were unable to hijack anymore airliners things seemed to calm down a bit and we started to concentrate on everyday aspects of our lives again.
Now, although terror doesn’t come from the skies, it’s again a pervasive part of our existence, usually carried out by just one person. You had the right -wing nut who crashed his car into the crowd in Charlottesville, Va. Now we have Las Vegas. Every time this happens it burns a little lesion into our psyche, I believe.
I don’t expect it to end in my lifetime, because I’m already well into senior citizen territory. For you younger folks, I imagine this will eventually end, as almost all things do. But how many more ruined lives must we endure before that finally happens?
Perhaps I should apologize for writing the gloomiest column I have ever written. I usually write on much lighter subjects. But last week’s column on the athletes’ protest touched a nerve for many readers and this week’s effort is actually far more serious.
However, it’s about what is now happening in our society. And it needs talking about. God bless all.