Posted: Sunday, January 27, 2013 3:32:27 PM
Stop. Stop what you're doing, stop what you're thinking. Just stop. Out loud, on three, say what caused the Newtown shooting. Ready? One, two, three. Did you say it? Well surprise, you're wrong. No one thing caused this. No one thing causes anything. Every event is a culmination of countless feelings, situations, and influences. Now, the question here is: Where do we go? My answer, dear reader, is forward.
"With the morn those angel faces smile/Which I have loved long since and lost awhile." John Henry Newman's words apply perfectly to the morning of December 14, 2012. Twenty beautiful little children came to school one morning human, only to leave as angels. I know that saying that people, not guns, are the problem is completely worn out and has been argued to death, but it's true. That evil, sick man who decided to open fire on the innocence that should have grown up to be our future was not brainwashed by his gun. He consciously pulled the trigger over and over; ending life after life until there was nothing left to do but end his own. How do we stop someone so messed up? The answer lies with the fact that he was, indeed, messed up. He was mentally incompetent, and he never got help. That's the true lesson from this. Maybe he felt like people looked down on him, maybe he was abused, maybe he just wanted attention, but the fact of the matter is he was sick and needed help desperately. The government MUST do something to help these people. Giving teachers guns won't help because not every teacher is 100% mentally secure. On a bad day, with a back-talking bunch of kids giving a teacher a headache, who's to say that this so called trustworthy individual won't pull the trigger? More guns are not the answer. The problem begins and ends with humanity, and that is where the answer must begin.
Now is the time for our country to come together, and fight. We must fight to stay strong, and we must fight to improve. Mental health has been neglected for much too long. I am no politician, I am no mental health expert, but I am in high school. Spending the majority of my day with America’s most hormonal and emotional has made me realize that every person has moments where they become hysterical, weighed down by stress, anxiety, and difficulty. If this happens to those who are mentally healthy, can you imagine what it’s like for those who aren’t? It’s time to spend some serious time researching the best ways to address, treat, and even cure mental health problems. In America today, one in five people has some form of mental illness. This topic can no longer be taboo; it must be faced head on. America, we have suffered, but we must carry on and better ourselves to make up for a world missing twenty-six of its finest voices.