Times They Are A Changin'

Another day, another school shooting. No really, since the beginning of the year there have been more than a dozen school shootings or shootings on school property and as a human being and as a mother I'm not really sure how I'm supposed to wrap my head around that. I've always been one of those people who just assumed that eventually we, as a country, would do the right thing. I mean, we all have heard the stories about what those babies went through at Newtown, didn't we? We've all looked into the eyes of those parents standing outside the school, waiting to find out if their children are dead or alive. We've all imagined what it would feel like to be those children, or those parents, and what that insurmountable pain would actually be like. We've all thought about how overwhelming it would be to loose the thing you love the most for absolutely no reason. I'm know I'm not alone here, I know that the majority of us really feel these things. 

And yet, we've done nothing. We've grown complacent. We watch stories like the one out of Las Vegas and while we feel an overwhelming amount of grief, we do nothing. We hear about school shooting after school shooting and we do nothing. Most of us don't do anything because it feels like there is so little we can actually do, we are so powerless against those that are supposed to be protecting us. We say we are going to hold our lawmakers accountable but people's memories are short, their lives are so busy, and in the end we do nothing. Days or months later more kids die, and we still do nothing. 

I have to think, not this time. It's going to be different this time. Why? Because this time it's the kids themselves are speaking up. They are so tired of our inaction that they are going to take it upon themselves to teach us adults how get something done. Where we are complacent, they are angry. The Columbine massacre was 18 years ago, which means there has been an entire generation of kids that has grown up learning how to hide under desks, barricade doors and listening to lies told to them about how these type of safety drills make them safer. All the while the adults around have done nothing to protect them. Nothing to actually stop what it is that they are supposed to be hiding from. 

I have to hope that this time is different. Just like with #metoo, you can feel the movement swelling. You can sense that maybe, just maybe, this time the victim's will have the power. Just like with the many actresses who have told their stories, maybe these kids will find strength in their numbers. The hard truth is that because of us those numbers are actually more than we can even comprehend. Maybe their bravery will convince others to follow suit, not the politicians of course, they've shown time and time again how little they care about our kids, but maybe instead it will be the banks. Or maybe it will be the public shaming of our leaders when we reveal just how much money they take from the NRA. How much actual blood is on their hands. Or maybe it will be the walkouts, right now there are three planned. Or maybe it will be that it's just too expensive to keep a pro-gun stance. My hope is that it will be all of these things. That this shooting is going to be the time we all collectively stood up and said #neveragain. I vow to not become complacent. I vow to stand with those kids and to do everything I can in my power to protect their generation. I vow to do right by my own children. These times, they are changing. They absolutely have to. 

The Times They Are A-Changin'
Bob Dylan

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone.
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
And don't speak too soon
For the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who
That it's namin'.
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come senators, congressmen
Please heed the call
Don't stand in the doorway
Don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside
And it is ragin'.
It'll soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.
The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin'.
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin'.


Top image via CleoWade