Today’s shocking news of shooting deaths in two separate killings of innocent white women (one by police in Minnesota, the other a peer accountant in New Mexico) affects me differently than the many other tragic stories of killings that we hear every day. Is this because I am sexist or racist? No, it is only because middle-aged white women don’t get shot by unrelated persons or law enforcement officers very often.
After the initial reaction of shock and outrage subsided, I noticed that the sad news had a new and different effect on our neurologic processes. This presents an opportunity to consider related issues in a new light.
The next natural reaction is to consider our own mortality. A sobering exercise.
Then I paused to consider whether this affects my views on guns. No, it does not. It does, however, resign me to the understanding that we live in a deeply troubled world and that hoping to change that through personal or collective effort (legislation) is futile.