So a couple of weeks ago, I’d decided that my next Top 25 list would be 25 songs about guns. “Gun” by Gil Scott-Heron, “Guns in Brixton” by The Clash, “Pistol Grip Pump” by Volume 10, “Stray Bullet” by Organized Konfusion…cuts like that. Lots of good records about guns, many of which haven’t been heard by a lot of you.
But after the nonsense and tragedy, I couldn’t even pretend that would be appropriate. Not just because of what happened to my peoples, but because the mere thought of a gun is sickening to me now.
Yeah yeah, people–not guns–kill people. Whatever. Guns kill people. Simple as that.
I don’t really knock people for owning guns. Gil said, “philosophy seems to be/at least as near as I can see/when other folks give up theirs, I’ll give up mine.” When other people have guns, it because more risky not to have one. If someone kicks in the door of my house while I’m here, I have no idea what I’ll do since I don’t have a gun. All I can do is try to find some shit to throw or something. The steel would be a lot more effective.
But I can honestly say that the accessibility of a gun put my folks in this situation. I won’t go into details, but know this–when some people get mad, they just try to do the most hurtful thing they can. People fight because they get so mad that they want other people to feel it. It’s a sentiment that I don’t fully understand, but that’s what it is. Not sure how that helps people, but it is what it is.
So when someone is like that and has access to a firearm, it’s not hard to figure out what the results could be.
This has easily been the most stressful week I can remember. Even more stressful than when my best friend died. In that situation, there was no one to blame. He died in his sleep. I always thought that the lack of someone to blame was why that was so hard for me to deal with things, and I still find that to partially be true.
But this situation was much different. I have spent most of the last nine days trying to figure out how a person could be so terrible as to do this. I still can’t come to grips with that. I still can’t comprehend what would possess someone to behave like this.
And while I struggle to understand it, I’ve had to watch people that I love have to mourn the loss of people they loved.
And I blame guns.
Yeah, the gun was in someone’s hand, but we live in a culture that glorifies that stuff. It makes packing a pistol cool. It makes the willingness to use that pistol even cooler since that sorta guarantees that no one will mess with you.
I have no idea how to fix that. Guns seem an unnecessary thing, but I’ve always lived a rather cushy middle-class life. I always thought the gun-packers in my neighborhood–remember, I live in Texas–were wackos on some crazy Rambo shit. I still think that.
But there are other people with other concerns, and I can’t really relate to them. Their reality is really far from mine.
I just remember the eerie feeling I had in a car with a couple of cousins a few years ago when one cousin decided to pass his .380 around so we could all see it. I just remembered how cold and heavy that thing was. It really felt like death. Spooked me out a little bit.
I’m not sure this made any sense. Just know I probably won’t be doing that gun list anytime soon.
“If you got children, love em, cuz God just might take em home
cuz one day you’re here, baby
the next day you’re gone.”
–C.L. Butler, better known as Chad.