Many of my fellow bloggers participated in a day of silence yesterday in honor of the Sandy Hook victims, and while I too am keeping them in my heart and thoughts this week, it is also my personal choice not to be silent. This is because I believe that what we need in the wake of this tragedy, like so many others that have come before, is not merely remembrances, thoughts, words and prayers, but genuine action.
I strongly believe that the increasing prevalence of events like this one is a multi-faceted crisis that needs to be addressed in a comprehensive manner. Easy access to guns, the state of our mental health system, exposure to violence within our culture and the way some young men are socialized surely all play a role in contributing to these types of atrocities. No one factor acts alone, and therefore, there is no "easy fix."
So, while I do think that tougher gun control laws and an improved mental health support system would be positive steps in the right direction, I also think that until we get serious about examining all of the interlinked causes and committing as many resources to solving this epidemic as we do to fighting other evils in the world, nothing will change.
Thoughts and memorials are beautiful things, but only action has the power to save lives.