Trying to explain an evil act like the one that killed 20 children and six adults at
The natural human reaction after extending sympathy and prayers for the victims and their families is to ask what actions might have been taken to prevent the massacre. More gun laws?
Some will blame TV and video game violence. Depictions of murder and other violent acts on TV and in the movies have grown in recent years, but people killed people long before TV and movies. Such explanations are too easy.
Would armed guards at
What about locked doors?
As much as humans have tried for millennia to prevent evil acts, we have not succeeded. In the modern era,
Political leaders not usually identified with spiritual concepts are making use of the word "evil' in accurately describing what happened in
Not every parent with a child in public school has the option of home-schooling, but that is something they might want to consider if they want to create a completely safe environment. Even private schools can't offer full protection from a deranged mind hell-bent on carnage.
More information about the killer will surface in the days to come, but even if we learn he was psychotic and off his medication, that will not satisfy our communal anger or anguish. It will not explain evil. It will not explain why 26 innocent lives were lost.
The way to deal with evil is to first acknowledge that it exists and that we all possess the potential for it. We don't become evil by what we do, but because of who we are. We are human beings, not God. We are not "basically good," as some claim, we are imperfect and fall far short of any true standard of perfection.
Evil is a "pre-existing condition." In some it is controlled by an inner compass, or by laws and cultural constraints. When it is not, we get
There may be no greater expression of evil than the murder of children in their classrooms. In calling for prayers, officials have taken an important first step in combating evil, but a larger question should be asked. Perhaps theologians, pastors, priests and rabbis are the ones to ask it, but permit me a suggestion.
If there is a source of evil, is there also a source of good? And if there is, has that source for good been offended by all of the accumulated evil we are piling up, affording it an upper hand?
As a friend of mine says, "Not a sermon, just a thought."
Cal Thomas is a conservative American syndicated columnist and author syndicated in over 550 newspapers and is heard on over 300 radio stations
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