The 142nd

There never needed to be a 142nd mass shooting. And there never needs to be another one in our schools, in our workplaces, in our country.  And yet . . .

“We are the only advanced country in the world that sees these shootings every few months.”—President Barack Obama, Oct. 1, 2015.

And as the president said later in his response to the newest tragedy in Roseburg, OR, “somehow this has become routine.” As horrifying as that may sound, it’s true. And it’s just as true that our Congress blocks passing any substantial and effective gun-control laws to help prevent mass shootings. And the third truth that I will keep bringing up is that the underlying issue is not just gun control, but patriarchy.

But as I said just a few months ago, and I said a few months before that, and I said each time we see one of these mass shootings, our thoughts and prayers are not enough.  It’s not enough.  It does not capture the heartache and grief and anger that we should feel.  And it does nothing to prevent this carnage from being inflicted someplace else in America — next week, or a couple of months from now.

—President Barack Obama, Oct. 1, 2015.

He is absolutely right!  Our prayers, thoughts, heartache, grief, and anger are not enough.  Gun-control laws need to be passed AND we need to wake up to the reality of living under a patriarchal social structure which continually and constantly sends out the message that for men and boys violence is a legitimate male response. Further, in order to be in lock-step with patriarchy, violence is cast as the premier male response.

I invite you to  learn more about the devastating effects of patriarchy wreaks on all of us. Please do read the important work of Dr. Alan G. Johnson found here and here. Follow that with my post about the way patriarchy pushes the warrior or wuss identity on men and boys. To really dive in, Johnson’s book The Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy  and Gerda Lerner’s The Creation of Patriarchy are crucial. Finally, for the advanced, check out the wonderful blog: i blame the patriarchy.