Thursday, December 20, 2012

hope and situations

As I was babbling about hope, situations, and how we might react a few weeks ago, I couldn't bend the words to my will - that's my problem A week after the shootings I offer you a parallel ideal posted by TNC at The Atlantic. In his words at the bottom of the post he answers a lot of what was calling me, and these two in particular stand out:

"But I would not insist that I was the same person armed, with the power to take a life, that I was without it."


"These are compacts I have made with myself and with my family. There are other compact we make with our country and society. I tend to think those compacts work best when we do not flatter ourselves, when we are fully aware of the animal in us."

The first statement rings so true for me - I cannot insist that I would or would not behave a certain way in a different situation. I do believe that if you are holding a gun in your hand that you aren't the same person you are without it. I don't even think it's a debate, and it follows my general rule, no doubt heisted from somewhere else, that if you pull out a gun you better be ready to use it. For any person to assume that they know what will happen tomorrow, next week, or next year in their life is fooling themselves. Proof of that, in the current situation is that Ms. Lanza never imagined what her son was capable of doing. She had guns in her house legally. She never expected her son to kill her then drive five miles and mow down 26 innocents. When you remove the anchor we all have, the one that allows us to imagine that we are the perfect ones, it's much easier to see the problems that exist. When you put that gun in your hand, when you release that anchor, you are a different person: one probably for the worse, one for the better.

As for the compact it's the same thing, and tied to same instinct that we are so often wrong about - we aren't necessarily who we think we are and my day-to-day life is so different than the pact I have with society. Any assumptions I have about how my life is to be led should always be measured in tandem with the compact of which I am a party.

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