Monday, December 17, 2012

I cannot Eat...

Sorry folks if you came here to find the names for the giveaway winners. I have to get something else of my chest first. For the last 3 days I have been sitting my little studio just feeling numb. How is this possible? How can I continue living in this violent country? I find it hard to sleep, breath, or eat. One famous quote by Jewish Artist Max Liebermannn came to mind.

While looking out his window and watching the Nazis celebrate their victory by marching through the Brandenburg Gate, Liebermann was reported to have commented: "Ich kann gar nicht soviel fressen, wie ich kotzen möchte." ("I cannot eat as much, as I would like to puke").

I am so sick of it. I am sick of turning on my computer and finding images of this on my computer. I am sick of the blame game being played and the pointing of fingers.

It's the guns.
It's mental illness.
It's the media's fault.

Really people? Look at yourselves. I don't think the answers are that easy. You cannot point to just one thing. If you want to solve this problem you must look at it from all angles and fight it on all fronts.

I grew up in a Nation that has very strict gun laws. My parents never had to worry when I went to a friend's house. Nobody in my family ever owned or used a gun. Guns are for war.
In the US they are a recreational thing. You can buy them at pawnshops or go to a gun show and buy one without background check. ANYBODY who has a mind to buy one can get one. Registered and legally owned they can do a whole lot of damage.

Mental illness. I have seen the article by the mother whose son is mentally ill blasted all over FB by friends. Yes, the US really needs to do something about health care and helping people who are not insured and mentally unstable. Mothers of children who are sick need help. Turning mentally ill people loose in the streets because people don't want to pay taxes for the health centers that provide them with medications does not help the situation. I find it ironic how nobody wants to pay taxes in this country but then there is an outcry over such facilities not being available for folks who need them.

Is it the media's fault? Does the media make heroes out of deranged people? Do you really think the boy in this case cared about the media and his ultimate motive was to be in the newspaper? I think it's gross how every little detail is shared and made public. I feel terrible for all the families involved - victims and relatives of the killer alike. Can you imagine being the person wrongly accused? But we have to take a good look in the mirror and check ourselves. This stuff sells papers. Why do people hunger to know those details. Is it because we want to understand this thing that cannot be understood?  Or is it some strange kind of voyeurism? Almost like another Crime TV show - but it's real.

Something has to change in this country. But it's not just ONE thing.

I got into the biggest argument with my own husband this weekend about guns. How this whole thing will just turn into another time wasting argument over gun control. My husband argued that it's not the guns and that we need to fight "the culture of violence" in this Nation. And I totally wholeheartedly agree to that. I think if we want to change what happened we need to start in our own households. Don't let your children play violent video games and watch TV shows or movies that glorify violence. We have to teach them the value of human life and respecting other people.
We have to spend quality time with our kids and know our childrens' hearts.

BUT we can only control our own household. We cannot tell other people how to raise their kids. It's going to take a long long time to change those things because they are so ingrained in this culture. You cannot forbid those horrible video games. Can you? You cannot stop movie makers from creating chainsaw massacre movies and forbid people to watch that stuff. But you CAN change gun laws. You CAN make it harder for people to own them. People say, he could have done this with knifes like some deranged person in China. And isn't it just as awful if he had killed only one or two people? Yes, every dead child matters. Every single one was precious. Still I believe firmly that less is better. If a life can be spared because there are less weapons to go around let's do it.

Why do we need a million safety regulations for handmade toys but a person can walk into a gun show or buy assault weapons and ammunition via the Internet?

Sorry folks I just had to say those things. It's not business as usual for me. I did go to church yesterday, and it felt good to finally be able to cry during our pastor's sermon. I want to make a doll for one of the families who lost their daughter. I am part of a group of wonderful doll makers on Facebook and we are going to send dolls to each of the families. How can they ever be comforted?

Hug your children and make ART! It's the only thing that makes sense to me right now.

I'll announce the winners of my Giveaway later today.


Velina said...

What comes to mind for me, is the fact that family members don't communicate. That people become lost and distant. There's no excuse for violence at any level. I recall a time when families, friends and communities worked as a unit. People are so alone these days.

germandolls said...

yes, I think that's true. the article by the mother raising a mentally ill boy demonstrates her loneliness. Who can she turn to in her ordeal with the child? How do can we help her and her child her and the boy? Do we look away or help?

Rebecca Bednar said...

I am a psychotherapist, and I treat kids every week. I have to avoid too much sensationalized media about this stuff because I know what kind of ramifications this event will have on families of the deceased as well as the kids who survived. You are right - we haven't figured out how to truly help the seriously, seriously mentally ill people in our communities. And even if we HAVE it figured out, people can still refuse help. That is why all those other issue are so important - weapon control, overexposure to violent tv/movies/video games - we also can't control who watches/plays these. A person who is really ill can't always distinguish between reality and fantasy, and then this stuff happens because the consequences aren't real enough. I have three boys (and one girl, who loves to look at your dolls!), and I am more committed than ever to help them find true heroes to look up to - people who model kindness, appropriate use of power, and altrusim. That is my take on this - all the school shootings have been perpetrated by boys and men - we are doing something wrong in our society in how we raise our boys. They need us.

germandolls said...

I think this is a really important remark about boys. I can't agree more. I know that all the teenage boys my goes to school with play those shoot-up games. We are the only family who doesn't own an x-box. My son actually says he cannot invite friends over because they wouldn't know what to do at our house. All they do is play those games staying up all hours...What does this say about our culture?

softearthart said...

I feel that one must start with oneself, give out light and love, which you do through your dolls, they are imbued with love and warmth.
From small beginnings,the children who hug your dolls will not be mass killers I am thinking.
To stand tall in your own beliefs, makes the negative people feel unsettled and weak, so their energy is weakened
We as Mothers must be strengthened by this event, an indeed it has generated so much discussion, and discussion brings about change.
Love and light Marie

Anonymous said...

The deadliest school massacre in US history was not done using guns and bullets. The Bath School massacre. Ban the guns or not it will not solve the cause or stop the action of violent people. They will always find away as long as they exist. A child will be at just as much risk in this culture either way. The only solution is to teach you children how to avoid situations and get out of them. No guns will not reduce the risk of harm here or increase the possibility of survival that is a myth.

A person can not just walk in or go online to buy a gun. A person has to prove who they are pass a background check and have no criminal record and no record of mental illness. I know it seems as in and out as voting but it is not. Our FBI has an entire department that handles this that is why the process goes fast and smooth.

germandolls said...

I have never been to a gun show. but I know people who have, and they say you can buy guns there without any questions asked. Where was the FBI then? yes, there are other ways to cause damage but in this case it was a weapon and many many bullets. He would have killed every single child and adult in that school if the police had not arrived.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a Police presence is needed at and sounding our schools as a part of their protection of the community. Guns or not, our schools are unprotected, vulnerable, weak, and a target.

Guns or not that is a fact.

U.S. federal law requires persons engaged in interstate firearm commerce, or those who are "engaged in the business" of dealing firearms, to hold a Federal Firearms License and perform background checks through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System maintained by the FBI prior to transferring a firearm.

The only loophole is if the gun was not sold. Such as a gift or a trade.

If your friend witnessed illegal activity they should have reported it.

woolies said...

When we first moved to Tucson (the wild west), we took a drive with our kids, through a beautiful state park. Just as we came out of the park, there was a crossroads. Sitting at the corner was an old car, with weapons of every sort for sale. Guns, ammunition. Big sign on the side of the car "Buy Guns Cheap". I was horrified. I do not believe that we all should "have the right to bear arms". Ban guns. Guns are for war. That's a huge part of it - I realize not the only solution, but certainly part of it, in my opinion.

germandolls said...

I like this quote by Benjamin Franklin: “Anyone who will trade freedom for security deserves neither.”