Clamoring for Safety and Security
A Feature Review of
America And Its Guns: A Theological Expose
Paperback: Cascade Books, 2012.
Buy now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]
Reviewed by Todd Edmondson.
Late last month, when reports broke of a gunman opening fire outside the Empire State Building, the news should have been more shocking. Public violence of this sort should have stunned those who heard about it on TV, the internet, or the radio. But instead, there was a normalcy to the event, an inevitability, even. It didn’t seem particularly earth-shattering or even extraordinary that someone might inflict this kind of violence on his neighbors. This was merely the latest in a series of fatal shootings that had dominated the headlines on a regular basis throughout the summer of 2012. The Dark Knight Rises. The Sikh Temple. Texas A & M. Add to this list the Virginia Tech and Fort Hood massacres and Jared Lee Loughner’s Tuscon killing spree, and it appears that in recent years, the kind of violence that shocked us when it unfolded at Columbine High School in 1999 has grown so prevalent as to seem commonplace. Mass shootings are neither a new phenomenon (according to Mother Jones, there have been 60 such incidents in the U.S. in the last thirty years) nor a wholly American one (Anders Breivik’s rampage in Norway last year was one of the deadliest such attacks ever carried out). Nevertheless, the recent spate of these killings on American soil should provoke serious reflection, beyond the normal political grandstanding and news-cycle hand-wringing that constitute the usual response. Continue Reading…