I’ve long believed that we come to understand the “capital R” Resurrection only through appreciating “small r” resurrections—the stuff of daily life, like a sunny day after a long stretch of rain, a restored relationship, health after illness, energy after inertia, seeing a problem that seemed intractable in a new light, starting a difficult venture late in life. One woman even described seeing the ultrasound of her new grandbaby two weeks after her husband’s death. Life and death brush hands in a mysterious dance, and sometimes we catch a heartening glimpse.
For those who have grown weary of the struggle for sane gun control, the events since the Parkland tragedy have brought hope. Ever since Columbine, we’ve known this is a pro-life issue; that became increasingly clear after young children were killed at Sandy Hook. Yet church leadership which speaks loudly about abortion seems strangely silent on this life issue. So, for what it’s worth, one Catholic voice:
There seem to be arguments against even the mildest laws that are proposed, but this catastrophe has dragged on far too long, while gun manufacturers make millions. So why not try? Why not follow the lead of every other nation that solved this problem long ago?
After a deadly mass shooting in 1996 with an assault weapon, Australia banned them and hasn’t had a similar massacre since. (The US Congress enacted such a ban in 1994, but let it expire 10 years later.) Similarly, after a school shooting in Scotland, the UK passed strict gun control, which ended the problem now plaguing our schools and inner cities. Students’ signs carried during the March for Our Lives 3/24 said it eloquently: “Protect us, not guns.” “I’m not bulletproof,” and Tom Mauser’s (whose son Daniel died at Columbine) “This is your Vietnam.”
It’s heartening to see the Parkland survivors who just may tip the balance and achieve the critical mass necessary for legislation. They aren’t deterred by the pessimism of “It hasn’t worked. We’ve been trying since Columbine.” Nor are they silenced by the tired NRA arguments that to them must seem as anachronistic as the muskets the organization so righteously defends. They see clearly through the obscene hypocrisy of legislators and president who send “thoughts and prayers,” then take millions in campaign contributions from the NRA. They are articulate, well-organized, and hold an impeccable stance: US kids shouldn’t be the only ones among civilized nations who are afraid to go to school.
An Easter resurgence of life, a spring-time burst of energy, a bright banner of hope—are these not all hints of Resurrection?