Nashville, the AR-15, Comprehensive Justice
KTF Weekly Newsletter
This week’s newsletter comes in the wake of a mass shooting in Nashville, Tennessee, political unrest in France and Israel, and reflections on the anniversaries of wars in both Iraq and Yemen (more on Nashville and Yemen below). It also arrives in the middle of Lent, and the many places in our lives that news cameras will never capture where we are longing for God to fill us and make us whole. Whether you find yourself weary or stable, reeling or grounded, may you not grow weary in doing well because we know we will reap a harvest if we do not give up (Galatians 6:9). God is faithful.
Here are our highlights for this week.
The shooting on Monday in Nashville felt closer to home for me than most. I have personal connections to teachers in the city and people in the community of the school. The fact that the victims were yet again children made the story pervasive national news. And on top of this catastrophe is the reality that it wasn’t even the only mass shooting on Monday. Fortunately the five people shot in Milwaukee survived. But the 14 mass shootings in the week preceding Nashville claimed the lives of 13 people, injuring another 68. So for many different reasons, I appreciated this prophetic word from Reverend Esau McCaulley in his regular New York Times op-ed. He makes the point that arguing against politicizing these tragedies is, functionally, a pro-gun talking point to maintain the status quo. But our almost daily mass shootings are the result of policy choices, and there is no reason to delay the process of starting to make different choices. Moreover, McCaulley argues, the results of the policy decisions countries make should be a metric we use to judge their success or failure. And America’s failure lies in the sheer number of child-sized coffins we are willing to tolerate.