I have always found it curious to hear anyone say most people are basically good in light of the overwhelming evidence to the contrary. I have long thought that people have varying amounts of good and evil in them. That capacity can be plotted along a bell curve. Mother Theresa would be at one end of the bell curve while Richard Ramirez (Night Stalker) would be at the other. The rest of us fit somewhere between the two.
Perhaps I'm oversimplifying it. But I'm a man and we are some simple creatures. The point being, there are just as many people likely to do you some amount of harm as there are those who would do some amount of good.
The rush to find a one size fits all solution to the horrible evil perpetrated in Sandy Hook is well intended but will never work. The fact remains we live in a fallen world where evil can move freely among us.
The psycopathic killer that preyed on elementary school children chose his target because they were helpless. The wolf preys on the sheep. The wolf does not prey on the sheepdog.
Calls to ban certain weapons misses the point. If the killer had not used a high capacity rifle it would have been a shotgun. The outcome would have been the same. Evil is evil.
We live in a free society. Evil people will exploit this. That is the nature of things.
Losing this many innocent lives in a single incident is news because it is rare. Sadly, we lose far too many innocent lives one at a time. It seems that not a day goes by where I don't read of a child being killed or mistreated. Often by someone they loved. I could go on with many other examples. There are so many at times it crushes my very soul.
In my 17 years of law enforcement, I've encountered a number of very bad people. One of them was the Night Stalker, Richard Ramirez. He had a uniquely evil quality to him that he wore like a piece of clothing. I suspect Adam Lanza did as well. But there are many more people out there who do harm. We need to remain vigilant in our fight against evil and committed to protecting the least among us. But it doesn't have to stop there.
Let's begin this Christmas season and the approaching new year with the resolve to treat one another with a bit more grace. It can be something as simple as holding the door open or thanking the person who held it for you. Every simple act of kindness costs nothing but will make a moment in time just a little bit better.
May the peace of the Lord be with you.