This blog will upset you; it will frustrate you. It will hopefully provoke an emotional response; it may encourage you, validate you. Whatever it does, I hope it moves you to do so something; called someone; check on someone; sit with someone you've never sat with; ask someone how they’re doing; see something say something etcetera. I have been having challenges with this latest school shooting which I'm grateful for because it means I'm not desensitized. I have been having trouble just coping with this latest shooting as a mother, as an instructor, as a clinician, as a human being. I am angry!! It hurts to know that the one place that we used to be able to send our children for refuge, clothing, food, for education is now the most dangerous place on earth outside of a mall, clinic and church. Next to an abusive home, a sexual predator, drug dealer and kidnapper are no match for a kid with an axe to grind. The educational setting is a threat to the very safety of our children; this is antithetic to the purpose of a school. Daily our children are sent off to school and will either be made privy to the teacher’s drug use, a conduit for repressed sexual aggression of an adult, a punching bag or an experiment for the next round of Common Core Trial and Error training. But I digress; my point in writing this blog is to stimulate conversation on the fact that it appears that White men have always been weapons of mass destruction. From Slavery to the Civil War to the Jonestown Massacre to Columbine to the made up War on Drugs that castrated multiple communities of color. My concern is that the privilege that goes along with being a White man places every community, including their own, at risk. We allow the media to rationalize the violent behavior of white men and women to the very detriment of whole communities and civilizations. We ignore the fact that they are now America's number one problem with serial murder mass murder and terrorism being a predominantly white issue. Let me Define these concepts for you: terrorism, according to Google is the “unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.” Serial/mass murderers are defined as individuals who kill at least three individuals but there is a cooling off period between each one. I remember once being upset with a friend because she wanted so much to draw parallels and define the difference between labels despite the fact that multiple lives were lost in the Vegas shooting; but, her white privilege afforded her the opportunity to do so. Sticking to the aforementioned definitions, our government, police officers and certain municipalities and systems are serial/mass murderers. Flint, Michigan politicians are serial/mass murderers. Timothy McVay, the KKK, the Neo-Nazis and the shooters in every mass shooting to occur in America to date, are terrorists. But now I'm wondering, why young white weapons of mass destruction aka terrorists, or old white weapons of mass destruction aka terrorists, are offered empathy, sympathy, and understanding. We seek to understand the pathology or cause of the desire to kill; was it because they were grieving or have some type of disorder? We don't want to just admit that they were inherently evil. The problem though in employing this type of tactic, is that it leads me to wonder should we not extend the same understanding and compassion to those who blew up the World Trade Center? Flew the plane into the Pentagon? Who dropped the bomb in 1941 Pearl Harbor? Of course not! Why, because the difference here is that these weapons of mass destruction are wholly Caucasian; European, white, whatever you want to call it while the above referenced terrorists were people of color. White men are and have always been weapons of mass destruction but social stratification, institutional racism and ignorance water and harvest the seeds of indifference that trick us into honing in on young men of color while white weapons of mass destruction gain access to the oblivious and innocent hoping to do nothing but live out their dreams. Long story shorter; this last shooter had more red flags and opportunities for intervention than we have states in this country. Had he been a young man of color, he would have been connected immediately to some level of Juvenile Justice and forced to receive treatment for whatever disorder or ailments punitively attributed to him. The reality is that while gun control will only control those already following the law, and mental health disorders are largely NOT responsible for these instances, white privilege and the refusal to acknowledge its presence across systems, will continue to prevent the appropriate interventions necessary for remedying these types of occurrences. Using mental illness to cover up inherent evil is only going to set members of the mental health community back 100 years in terms of minimizing stigma. We need real research and macro-perspective introspection along with an open and honest discussion about privilege, gun control, psychopathology, etc.
Conversations with an Indigo Child:
Me: What’s on your mind:
The Indigo Child: People want to know why our children are tired, anxious, and riddled with depression. We are tired; we are tired from rapid shifting in our moods as we await the ever-evolving battle on our earth, resources and future. We have attachment issues because our parents who are absent in our presence as they drown in the murky waters of social media, smart phones and instant gratification coupled with the emasculation of our fathers, the de-feminisation of our mothers and the lost values that belonged to our grandmothers and grandfathers. We have anxiety and worry about our futures as homeownership becomes a memory and affordable housing is nonexistent; student loans haunt our dreams as we see our parents increase their underpaid workloads to make ends meet in a way that is almost taunting. Barnyard and Candy Crush games become the apple of our parents’ eyes with their excitement and emotional response greater than that given to the achievement of walking, talking, toileting and educational achievement. Reaching the final level of Black Ops or Crush Saga is as important as reaching 10,000 friends on social media, yet more important than attending parent conferences, PTA meetings or enforcing discipline. Apple, Samsung and Hewlett are our foster parents while police officers are disciplinarians without restraint. Our president loves to hate, lives to kill and claims that he destroys to build. Our schools are war sites and learning is the equivalent of forgetting. People listen to ignore, talk to put down and fight to disagree. Our depressed little minds are unsure of who we were created to be because the structure around us is crumbling; where we used to grow up with some resemblance of hope for the future, we are hopeless. The people who are supposed to build us up are building their profiles. I sometimes think and I wish that the people that I knew on Facebook were as cool as the people that they are in real life. It's funny to me how people can live such dichotomous lives. We as their children see it. The lack of structure in homes and communities condition us to fail. We are anxious and worried because we keenly aware that we are not being equipped to take on the futures; we are angry because we are facing a future we did not choose. The dollar will be worthless. We have lived in war since 2001; schools are cesspools of inequality and violence. We children have been left to make grown-up choices and are punished subsequently. We are punished by dirty water, polluted air, high rates of living, political failure etc. This is what we are faced with, and this is why we are tired, anxious and depressed.