Hi Friends. Have you ever been wrong? Me too!
Have you ever tried something different, and that been wrong too? Same, same! No shame in getting it wrong; hey, at least you tried! Try again with something different; just keep trying! Many of our problems exist because we get stuck in the familiar, too afraid to set a different course. What if, instead of getting stuck in old patterns, we attempt to find a solution, and if that particular solution turns out to be wrong, we move forward again? What if we try something different until we get to the desired outcome? What if, indeed.
Have you ever heard of cognitive dissonance? Bear with me, I’ll make this brief, and you can look it up if you want a detailed, scientific, psychological analysis. Cognitive dissonance is the mental discomfort we feel when we hold two conflicting beliefs. Humans tend to like consistency in our perceptions, so a conflict of ideas causes us discomfort. For example, sometimes, our beliefs clash with our behavior. Maybe we want to lose weight and continue to eat chips and ice cream. Perhaps we want to cut our carbon footprint and continue to use plastic bags at the grocery store.
See what I mean? We have done or believed something for so long that even when we see a better way, we continue to do what is familiar and comfortable.
As we learn about and deal with yet another mass school shooting, we ponder what went wrong, why, and how we got here again?
After this tragedy played out in our heartland, we grieved, questioned, cried, and wondered, but did we act? Did we take immediate action to protect our children here in America like other countries? The unfathomable answer to that is no, no, we did not. Other countries have had mass shootings, and as a result, they changed their gun laws.
Great Britain, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Norway – are all countries with a historical culture of gun ownership, yet all tightened restrictions. Their violence statistics now stand in stark contrast to those of the United States.
After a British gunman killed 16 people in 1987, the British banned semiautomatic weapons, and the British instituted the same ban on handguns after a 1996 school shooting. Britain now has one of the lowest gun-related death rates in developed countries.
Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, and Norway followed suit with similar legislation and have had similar results. Why haven’t we?
I don’t pretend to have the answers, but I know that doing nothing isn’t working. Thoughts and prayers aren’t enough. Children have died. Children continue to die at the hands of people who shouldn’t have possessed a firearm in the first place. If what we choose to do is wrong or doesn’t work, we can go back or move forward with another option. Please, sign our petition preventing the cycle of abuse, speak out, call your congressman or woman, and get involved.
One more child dead at school is one too many. We’ve got to do something. Anything. Because nothing isn’t enough.
Editor, Ask Lala
Laura Fogarty writes “Ask Lala” for the Stop Abuse Campaign. She is a mother, an advocate and the author of two children’s abuse prevention books: I’M THE BOSS OF ME! and WE ARE JUST ALIKE!