Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tired and Sad

I'm starting to feel like I shouldn't be living in this country, that I don't belong. It's taken me a while to feel this way, being the Mormon-raised optimist that I am, I mean, used to be.

The VT massacre has me sad and scared. And sad and scared. Gun ownership/acquisition laws are slow to change, if at all. I read somewhere today that the NRA spent 400,000 a day for more than one day, if not hundreds of days, to try to prevent Kerry from winning the presidency. I don't believe everything I read, and this may not be an accurate statistic, but the NRA is powerful and it is able to spend money lobbying its positions and--bottom line--guns are getting into the hands of those who shouldn't have them, too many of THOSE who shouldn't have them. And Columbine. And Simon's Rock. And the Amish School. And other school shootings. Something's broken. Something's wrong.

You know it's broken when the swimming teacher is shocked that your three year old has never seen a squirt gun. That he doesn't know what to do with it. You know it's broken when kids spend more time indoors or in completely supervised situations than out riding bicycles with friends, or playing with a group of kids where kids watch each other's backs and learn how to be kids and be in the world without a thousand adults constantly reminding them what to do. And not do.

People are scared for their kids. I get that. I'm scared for my kids. But where can a kid go and be a kid? Maybe Lanesville.

I don't agree with the President's approach to the war in Iraq, or lack of approach, to this war. And I don't agree with the Supreme Court's recent decision about abortion. I live in a city that can't properly fund its schools due to an inane state aid formula and special education mandates that require cities to provide, provide, provide without funding, funding, funding. Then there's proposition 2 1/2 and rising health care costs and energy costs for the city--let alone the rest of the uninsured country. It doesn't make any sense.

But here I am. I'm here because I love Gloucester and a lot of the people in it. Because my children can be with their grandparents, people my kids love dearly. And I want to keep caring. I do. I want to go to the 'Up with Children' state rally and talk to the legislators as the city councilman I saw in the coffee shop suggested. I want to do the things that I'm supposed to do, as a concerned parent and citizen. And all of that.

But I'm losing motivation. The people in power and the money that puts the people in power, they're more powerful than I am. I think. I feel insignificant--and I'm tired of feeling this way. I'm tired of feeling like my views don't matter. Basically, I'm just tired. Tired and sad.

1 comment:

Ariane said...

I'm right there with you....I keep thinking of the Toronto area, not far from where I grew up. And then I realize I'm almost 40, Patrick and I have built a life in Gloucester, that I don't want to start all over. That maybe if there are enough of us who feel this way that the country (or at least our corner of it) will get better. My boss, who has a son 2 months younger than mine, said of the VT tragedy: "I can't let my mind go there" - with all the future implications for our babies that implies. I'm there with him too.