“There is a field out beyond right doing and wrong doing,
I’ll meet you there.”
There’s been a lot of debating, especially on Facebook, but then twenty-seven or forty-eight or ninety-two heated comments later, someone trips over the fact that we essentially agree. I’ve seen it happen again and again–minds so tattered from the brutal slaying of innocents allowing hearts to speak louder.
First we are insulted or offended or threatened. Then we are furious or obnoxious or despairing. But with each reminder of the devastating loss in Connecticut, we re-evaluate… we attend our child’s holiday concert, we wrap her presents, we tuck her into bed–and with our joy comes the bitter sting of their devastating loss.
One Facebook friend stormed against the focus on guns in favor of prayer and the banning of video games, and then suggested this: Let’s see where we agree. I definitely think guns should be regulated and that assault weapons should be illegal and not even manufactured.
Another friend vigorously defended the need for guns as a means of protection, but eventually said: I’m confident that Vice President Biden will do what needs to be done. I would be thrilled if this administration banned all automatic assault style rifles. I also support ammunition limits. I think in the end we’ll all move forward with changes everyone can agree on.
Even a young man, claiming the need for arms against a potential dictatorship, relinquished his absolutism in the face of the Sandy Hook massacre, with: I whole heartily agree with some of the anti-gun arguments.
His friend, a Marine, did his own bit of surrender: I have learned a lot in the last 24 hours on Facebook. It certainly was not my intention to take our conversation this far, and I honestly had no idea so many people would be involved. I do appreciate that everyone respected each other and their opinions and had a civil conversation. Although my feelings remain the same, I am beginning to see others’ views. In the end we all want the SAME thing for ourselves, our families and our children who have their whole lives ahead of them.
I think the mystic poet Rumi had it right when he suggested that we meet out beyond the field of right doing and wrong doing. It’s the children of Newtown who have led us there.
Kelly Salasin, December 2012
And here is some of the best writing I’ve found this week in response to Newtown:
Going Home (author returns to Newtown for Christmas)
Tools of an ugly trade (a S.W.A.T. officers addresses assault weapons)
God can’t be kept out (a woman of faith takes on religious extremists)
a majority of cowards (a sobering, thought-provoking read)
Envisioning a Healed World (the world is an echo of wounds)
“Sometimes I would like to ask God why He allows poverty, suffering, and injustice
when He could do something about it.
But I’m afraid He would ask me the same question.”