I’ve been pretty quiet about a lot of things that bother me lately – which might also mean I’ve gotten better about not letting things bother me. Still, there are things I wonder, fret, worry about and do not understand.
Why do we humans have so much trouble reading words and taking them at their value? Why do we seem to need to twist them the direction we want them to go? For example – Oregon recently (as in the past year) adopted a bill allowing the court to levy a “risk assessment” which would require that those people deemed high risk of danger to themselves or others would be forbidden to have deadly weapons. The text, in part, reads as follows:
SECTION 2. (1) A law enforcement officer or a family or household member of a person
may file a petition requesting that the court issue an extreme risk protection order enjoining
the person from having in the person’s custody or control, owning, purchasing, possessing
or receiving, or attempting to purchase or receive, a deadly weapon.
(2) An extreme risk protection order petition shall be heard by the court and issued or
denied on the same day the petition is submitted to the court or on the judicial business day
immediately following the day the petition is filed.
(3) The petition for an extreme risk protection order must be supported by a written af-
fidavit signed by the petitioner under oath, or an oral statement taken under oath by the
petitioner or any other witness the petitioner may produce.
(4) In determining whether to issue an extreme risk protection order, the court shall
consider the following:
(a) A history of suicide threats or attempts or acts of violence by the respondent directed against another person.
This seems pretty clear cut to me – and what I read tells me that maybe those school shooters, who obviously fit the category of “extreme risk”, could have been prevented with a law such as this one. Yet, I talk to people – gun owners who are very protective of their right to own guns – who interpret this to mean that if I got angry at them for something, I could call the police and say they threatened me and the police would come and take their guns. Whoa! I guess the words have different meanings for you than they do for me.
Then there are the climate change deniers. I will admit that there is the possibility that some weather conditions are cyclical, but I have a really hard time attributing all of the extreme weather we’ve been having in recent years to that. Scientists have proven that our seas are rising (and no, to the elected Congress person who said it’s because the White Cliffs of Dover are disintegrating and falling into the ocean, thereby raising the water level, I’m not buying your theory), hurricanes have come in greater number and greater force, tornados also are now coming with greater force, weather changes are more rapid, air quality is decreasing, our water sources are threatened with greater pollution – due to recent government decisions – and I wonder, will there be a world that is habitable for our grandchildren and their children?
The growing division, the increasing hatred, racism, fear, anger, in this country is frightening. We are all human beings, the difference in color, eye shape, religious beliefs, make us no more or less human than the guy standing next to us. What is so hard about living and letting live? Why can’t we be more generous with our love for our fellow man? Why do so many of us embrace extremism?
So there you have my greatest frustrations, fears, sadnesses. There you have the reasons I am most happy to stay in my own little world, my five acres of earth space, with my furry girl.
To end on a happier note, there are signs of hope, faith, and beauty in my world.