This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Saturday, May 19, 2018:
The problem isn’t guns but people who use them to commit evil. The solution is not simply to protect ourselves from evildoers but to reverse our cultural decline that has caused more people to choose evil over good.
Early Friday morning 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis burst into an art classroom at Santa Fe High School, shouted “Surprise!” and started shooting. By the time the spree ended nine students and one teacher lay dead and another 10 students wounded, some seriously.
But although this is the latest school shooting this year, it is not the only one, or even the most lethal. Three months earlier, another school shooter claimed 17 innocent lives in Parkland, Florida.
Why is this happening? What can be done about it? Who’s to blame?
According to anti-gun leftists, gun-rights supporters are to blame. After the latest tragedy, Alyssa Milano, the starlet who formed an anti-NRA campaign last month, tweeted:
More dead children.
WE CAN’T CONTINUE THIS MADNESS! WE ARE DONE!
We‘re done with your – “the NRA didn’t pull the trigger” – spin. We are done with your pity, thoughts and prayers.
You flooded America with guns.
The gun lobby and gun manufacturers value profit over lives.
Actor and comedian John Leguizamo decried the lack of “sensible gun laws” in the country, tweeting:
My heart goes out to all these kids and parents that have to live in terror when they send their kids off to school because we don’t have sensible gun laws in American because of the NRA and Republicans!
On the other hand, gun-rights supporters opine that the problem is not that America is “flooded … with guns” or the lack of “sensible gun laws.” After all, our supposedly “sensible guns laws” have made our public schools “gun-free zones.” Instead of these schools being “flooded … with guns,” just the opposite is the case. Consequently, the children are sitting ducks and would-be perpetrators know it.
The Firearms Policy Coalition expressed its frustration over gun-free zones as a causative factor in Friday’s shooting:
Yet again we see the disastrous consequences of reliance on magical thinking and mystical “gun-free” zones.
Yet again we see that evil and insane people intent on causing death, injury, and chaos simply ignore the thousands of federal, state, and local criminal laws that criminalize conduct including murder, terrorism, assault, and illegally carrying guns onto school grounds.
Yet again our news outlets show us proof that the evil and insane will find a way to hurt or kill the innocent in so-called “gun free” zones until they voluntarily end their attack, commit suicide, or are stopped by a hero – often one who is armed.
Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) also blamed the school’s ban on guns, declaring that shooters such as Pagourtzis “show … up where there is no self-defense.” He explained:
I think the first thing we should do is, there needs to be an announcement by every school district that we’re going to defend our children, and that we’re not going to have a sign outside that [says], ‘We’re defenseless.’
And I think that’s the problem … that we do have these homicidal or crazy or mentally disturbed kids.
Yes, there are homicidal kids (and adults too), which is why gun-rights advocates argue that schools should no longer be gun-free zones but instead acquire the means to protect our children. After all, homicidal kids don’t walk around with warning signs declaring “I am homicidal,” and many may appear to be normal. Pagourtzis apparently appeared normal, prior to his murderous rampage. He played JV football and performed in a dance troupe for his church. Father Stelios Sitaras of Assumption of the Virgin Mary Greek Orthodox Church in Galveston, the church the shooter’s family attended, said, “He’s a quiet boy. You would never think he would do anything like this.”
Obviously, Pagourtzis could not have done “anything like this” without violating the beliefs of the religion he grew up in, particularly the Commandment “Thou shalt not commit murder.” But Pagourtzis had apparently rejected not only God’s laws but God Himself, having reportedly identified himself on social media as an atheist.
Other clues regarding Pagourtzis’ mindset were displayed in a photograph of a trench coat that Pagourtzis wore to school. The pins and emblems on this coat the communist Hammer and Sickle, a Nazi Iron Cross, an icon of Baphomet (the Satanic Temple’s defiance against traditional Christianity), and an icon celebrating Cthulhu (a cosmic entity worshipped by cultists).
Where did Pagourtzis obtain these pins and symbols? Did he get them from his church? Were they passed out after football practice? Did he just happen to wander into a pawn shop and see them and decide to purchase and then display them on his trench coat?
A better question is, “Why did Pagourtizis reject his religious upbringing?” Or, “Why did he reject God?” Part of the answer may have to do with the fact that Pagourtzis undoubtedly spent many more hours each week in a public school than in a church. And what does that school teach? That God created us and also gave us rules (absolutes) to live by? Or that we simply evolved out of the muck over millions of years, that there are no moral absolutes, and that “morality” is whatever we say it is?
The problem isn’t guns but people who use them to commit evil. The solution is not simply to protect ourselves from evildoers but to reverse our cultural decline that has caused more people to choose evil over good. And the problem with public schools is not simply that they are gun-free zones but, more fundamentally, that they are God-free zones as well.
One grieved student wrote a letter to God: “Why do you allow so much violence in our schools?” God answered bluntly: “I am not allowed in schools.”
President Abraham Lincoln anticipated our present situation in his speech entitled “The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions”:
Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the ocean and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest, with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force take a drink from the Ohio or make a track on the Blue Ridge in a trial of a thousand years.
At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer. If it ever reaches us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide.
Expelling God from the classroom and removing Him from the culture is a recipe for national suicide. It creates a breeding ground for more homicidal kids and more “surprise” attacks on innocent people. It also provides the rationale for would-be gun controllers to take away the guns, resulting in even more killings of defenseless victims. But it does not have to be this way. Both the moral climate and the hearts of men may be improved by a return to God.