The escalation of violence in North America is getting to the point where it is impacting the psyche of the citizens living here. As incredibly sad as I am at the loss of life, I am also struggling with an unexpected anger. Anger with the politically correct world we live in where people are afraid of offending someones feelings and where all feel that our personal rights outweigh those of the society that we have chosen to live in.
I see several issues which have culminated in this latest shooting on American soil. One of the saddest things imaginable is to have tragedy result in changes to the laws of a nation, so that the same set of circumstances do not result in the same catastrophic loss of life. The idea that if any one of these issues had been addressed earlier, it may have resulted in a dramatic change to a horrible and brutal event and saved lives.
We need to acknowledge several things when it comes to this specific shooting.
1) The killer is an American. Not just a resident, but a man born and raised in the country he went to school in, played in, grew up in, had all of his friends in. Yes, his parents immigrated from Afghanistan and yes, he was Muslim. But he was first and foremost a born, bred and raised American. So how did he develop into a perceived radical Islamic terrorist who vocalized then showed his support of ISIL by murdering so many innocent people?
2) The killer had Mental Illness. Well documented, well known and a major source of issues through his entire life. He was an angry man and violent. Where did this come from? Why was he so mentally distraught? Where was his help in dealing with the issues he clearly had? Why was he released into society with the amount of troubles he had when he was clearly presenting as an individual that was at risk to cause damage to others?
3) The killer used a military grade assault weapon to kill as many people as possible in the shortest amount of time. A mentally ill man, who was on the FBI watch list and who had been investigated twice, was allowed to walk in off the street and purchase a military weapon from a retail location. The last time I checked, the reason the military has these guns is to kill state perceived enemies who are trying to kill military personnel in battle.
We have to acknowledge that we live in a world which has become easy to circumnavigate. Many people are wealthy enough to afford to migrate to new locations and rather than assimilate into that new society, they are demanding that their old cultural practices and values be equal to, or replace, those of the region they chose to settle in. This is fundamentally wrong as it creates divisiveness instead of unity. It promotes isolation to maintain individualism of cultural practices. It is a breeding ground of contempt.
Immigrants from regions with Islamic religious beliefs are migrating into societies where Christianity and Judaism are the predominant religions and they are demanding that their rights to not be impeded by or exposed to the tenets of those religions, while maintaining and incorporating their own into all aspects of the society they have moved to, have created a severe tension between the faiths. Did his parents contribute to his issues or did they stem from something else?
We seem to forget that one of the main reasons, besides the economic accumulation of wealth, for migration into North America by Christians and Jews was to escape religious persecution from the Islamic people for practicing their faith, in the ancestral regions they all once shared. The reality is these 3 faiths which share so much, have never been able to get along when all together. We were here, they were there and like most families with issues, we could get along because we were kept slightly apart except during holidays; and it worked.
And now because of the immigration policies, the influx of Islam into North america has become a major issue. The reason is it’s not just the normal, average, run of the mill family who practices their faith who is coming across the ocean to settle in our countries. The major issue most people have with the radical Islamic people, is that they seem to believe things that most educated people, find offensive.
Things like forcing women to be second class citizens. For demanding they wear burkas, to not drive, to have no rights, to be chattel. None of that is the Islamic faith and yet the radicals are claiming it is part of their faith (and it isn’t if you read the Quaran). Radicals believe it is the law to stone women to death for being raped, to practice ‘honor killing’ because your daughters want to chose their own husbands instead of marrying their cousins, or worse, get an education. They believe that people with any sexuality other than heterosexuals, should be killed. And if you are gay or have a gay family member, your entire family is tainted, ruined and disrespected.
People with those divisive beliefs, do NOT belong in North America. If this is the practice they want, to hate others, then they should stay in their country of origin and I can decide to not go there to avoid it and they can not be allowed in this country and risk spreading it like a noxious illness. It used to be common practice to refuse ships with people suffering from contagious disease from docking in port, to protect the citizens of that country from disease. The rights of the passengers of the ship were not put above those of the citizens. People who chose to, could support the ill people, away from the shores and the masses were protected.
Now it is considered inhumane to not allow people with pathogens the same rights as those without. You don’t have to immunize your child to protect them against disease, you just let them infect other people who can not get inoculated due to immature or compromised immune systems. Individual rights have become more valued than those of a society and this is a step towards anarchy. Eventually the masses will rise in rebellion against the vocal minority and demand that the majority rule again.
Another factor which needs to be addressed is how we as a society treat those with Mental Illness. This American man had a clear path of well documented issues over a lifetime, showing that he needed treatment for psychological issues. Yet he lives in a system which neither cares about what happens to people who struggle with mental health or wants to be accountable for the actions of them, once they are pushed beyond their ability to handle something. The results are often criminal or results in harm being done to the individual or others in their proximity.
If you have a mentally ill man who was raised in a home environment where traditional and radical Islamic tenets were clearly taught and supported, based on some of the comments coming from his father to the media, you have a perfect environment for a radical organization to step in and direct that hate, that poor brain functioning and processing, into something that can be used as a weapon to harm others. And that’s exactly what happened when ISIL entered this mans life. He was finally getting direction.
One of the things that bothers me, is the specific and brutal targeting, the calm attack against the gay community in this club. He wasn’t out of control angry. It was a personal attack which seemed just too calm and scheduled to inflict the most harm towards others. I do not pretend to know or understand the psychopaths mind, but I am sure that simply seeing two men kissing would not trigger this type of calm cold retribution of a simple and passing action, no matter your belief on how sexuality should be displayed.
And finally, we can not talk about this event without talking about the lack of gun control laws and the second amendment, in the United States. I believe in an individual’s right to carry arms; to hunt and shoot and to defend their property. I believe those rights come with great responsibilities. There should be screening and psychological assessments done before releasing guns to an individual for use because not all people have common sense or were taught about gun safety by responsible individuals.
So let’s be absolutely clear, I do not believe a family needs an assault weapon in their home. Ronald Regan said it best for me, “ An AK47 (or an AR-15) a machine gun, is NOT a sporting weapon or needed for the defense of a home”. In Canada, in order to gain access to an assault weapon, you need to be a sworn member of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). You need to sign it out from an arsenal vault, after obtaining authorization.
These type of weapons, designed to kill multiple people quickly, can not be purchased the day before use, by a mentally ill man with severe anger issues; who has been investigated for terrorism twice by the FBI and who abused his wife. So tell me, how many people need to be killed before the Government of the United States steps in and tells it’s people that a military weapon needs to stay in military hands, with people who have been vetted to use them and who have the psychological counselling done to ensure that they will not turn on their fellow citizens?
I am first and foremost, the child of a military family. We owned guns and were taught to use them, clean them and to store them properly. There is no one who can convince me that the second amendment of the United States is in place to ensure every home and person in the country has access to a machine gun. Gun ownership is a privilege which should be denied to some people. Like violent criminals, abusive people or the mentally imbalanced. It seems rather like common sense and not a constitutional issue.
The killer was an American who was failed by his parents for raising him as an Afghanistan citizen rather than an American; by the Medical profession for not ensuring his mental health was under control and medicated and by his country of birth who investigated him as he was becoming radicalized, did nothing to stop it, then provided him with a military weapon to commit murder.
What a shit show. What a shame.