A little over a month ago, 58 country music fans died via machine gun slaughter in Las Vegas, Nevada. The country was horrified, and America’s leaders vowed to take action to combat gun carnage in the only way possible: by sending thoughts and prayers.
That should have done the trick — and yet yesterday, 26 church parishioners were gunned down with an AR-556 rifle while they sat worshipping. And this can only mean one thing: some callow, craven politician chose not to send his or her thoughts and prayers.
The irresponsibility of not sending thoughts and prayers is stunning. Consider that in 2016, the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando was the largest gun slaughter of its kind. It was certainly incumbent upon the leaders of our federal and state governments to do everything they could to stop the next mass shooting, and — as politicians have made very clear — that specifically means sending thoughts and prayers.
And yet someone obviously slacked on those thoughts and prayers after Orlando, because a year later we got Las Vegas. And then someone slacked again and we got the Texas church massacre. And by the way, Orlando itself only happened because someone slacked on thoughts and prayers after Fort Hood. Or maybe it was Newtown. It gets a little jumbled because we have so many mass shootings in this country.
The point is: What kind of a sick legislator could sit there knowing that he or she could take tangible action to stop gun violence — sending thoughts and prayers — but instead, chose to bury the problem and do nothing? They just decided to lie low, wait for the outrage to die down, and then move on as normal without ever sending thoughts and prayers.
Government leaders, if you look back and know you could have saved the lives of these shooting victims via preemptive action, but chose not to for any reason, you have blood on your hands. And by this we of course mean: you could have thought and prayed, but you didn’t, and now people are dead and it’s time to repent. And the way to repent is by thinking and praying.
We know that ending gun violence in America won’t be easy, for the simple logistical reason that it’s really difficult to coordinate everyone’s thinking and/or praying. But now, after the Texas shooting, let’s all resolve to think and pray, right now, for as long as it takes, so that we can one day look our kids in the eye and tell them: “I did everything I could.”