Tag: Death

Guns and (Funeral) Roses

I am tired.

I am so DAMN tired of turning on the news, tuning into Facebook, opening my homepage and seeing that yet another mass shooting has taken the lives of my fellow Americans.

10 lives gone after the shooting at Oregon’s Umpqua Community College today.  That is 10 too many.

Why is it so difficult to understand that GUN CONTROL IS A PROBLEM IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA?  Why?  I am genuinely asking.  Someone, please take the time and explain to me why we are unable to do anything to end this epidemic.  How many more people must lose their lives in these senseless tragedies?

I don’t care who the shooter was.  I won’t repeat his name.  He lost his life as well and I am sorry for that.  I know that I am supposed to hate him– he is a murderer.  Trust me, he is not on my list of favorite people- but I am still sorry that he and these 9 people lost their lives.  I am sorry when ANY life is lost.  I am sorry for the family members who must now bear the weight of this loss.

Isn’t that the point?  Shouldn’t we be upset when lives are lost?  Yes, evil people exist but if we relish in their pain and in their death, are we any better?  Should we be happy while his family now suffers with the guilt of his actions and the loss of one of their own?

I don’t want to take pleasure in the death of ANYONE, no matter their sins.

I pray that all of these souls will be cared for.  I pray for their families.  I pray for their friends.

And I pray that this country takes A STAND.

America allowed 27 people, 18 of which were CHILDREN, to die in the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.  We stood idly by and let them die in vain.  We have done NOTHING to protect our children, our elderly, our neighbors, our friends, our family.  NOTHING.  Columbine, Aurora, Tuscon, Virginia Tech, etc, etc, etc.  The list goes on and this country continues to fight over gun control because all that our nation seems to be good at lately is bullshit arguments aimed to delay progress.

If watching over a dozen children die hasn’t made our government take a stand, what will?  If we can’t rally after losing pure innocence, what the hell is left?

I am laying in bed, trying to write a cohesive blog but my emotions are getting the best of me and I am just pissed.  Forgive my language and use of a clichéd hash-tag but…#SORRYNOTSORRY.  I am still waiting for America to get off its ass AND DO SOMETHING.

“A house divided against itself cannot stand.” – Attribute it to Lincoln or the Bible, whichever makes you feel better, but stand by it.  It is the truth.  The more we fight one another, the less we accomplish.

I am tired.  I am so tired.  I don’t want to hear about any more funerals with guns at the forefront.  I don’t want to hear that anyone else has died because someone with severe mental depravities decided to shoot up a school, or a mall, or a movie theater, or ANYTHING.

I am tired.  Aren’t you?

Thank you, Steve Jobs.

Today has been an exceptionally hard day, what with my own personal troubles and then the untimely death of Steve Jobs.  It has been emotionally draining.  Sarcasm aside, this man’s death really has affected me.  I knew very little about him.  I hadn’t followed his success or paid much attention to him before today, honestly.  I didn’t know that he had died until the numerous posts on Facebook alerted me to the situation.  My initial reaction was sorrow for his family and friends who have lost a good man but other than that, he was just a celebrity passing; until I read this in a friend’s status:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

This one little quote brought tears to my eyes.  As one of many caught in this post-college, economic collapse, I have been feeling uninspired and hopeless as of late.  This one quote inspired me at a level that I have not felt in a long time.  It comes from a speech given by Jobs at the Stanford Commencement in 2005.  Had I only attended Standford instead of Rutgers and graduated a mere four years earlier, I would have been present for what I believe to be a truly amazing and heartfelt speech.  Perhaps then I would have followed my dreams instead of accepting positions out of fear rather than love.

I am now two years removed from college and as I have stated in previous posts, post-graduate life is not what I had expected it to be.  Hosting; waitressing; sitting behind a desk, lying to people for a living.  Not one of these things gave me an ounce of respect.  As a matter of fact, they were slowly draining me of any pride I may have had lingering after receiving the almighty diploma.  But in the three-second window that it took me to read that quote from Steve Jobs, I immediately felt hope again; a fleeting thought, but there it was.  Still inside me somewhere!  Thank the lord!  And thank you, Steve Jobs for re-igniting a spark in me that has been dormant for far too long.

After some further Facebook stalking, I found the quote that preceded the one above; which led me to cry a bit more.  Actually, let’s face it, I haven’t been honest.  I didn’t cry.  I sobbed.  Profusely.  I have never read something so jarring and yet wonderfully eloquent.

“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you w…ill gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.”- Steve Jobs

God bless you, Steve Jobs for coming out and saying what so many cannot admit.  “Even people who want to go to heaven, don’t want to die to get there.”  Who does not fear death?  But to use it as a fuel, to push yourself further in this life?  Now, that is genius.  I know the old adage, “Live every day as if it were your last.”  Yes, I have heard it and I will not give Steve Jobs credit for yet another novel idea; Apple and Pixar are accomplishments enough.  BUT it was not until I read it the way Steve Jobs had explained, that the saying truly held meaning for me.  Blame my naiveté or my unwillingness to see it until now, but the fact remains that for me, Steve Jobs gave that statement meaning.  I hope to live my life by these sentiments.

In the future, I hope to be as bold and as daring as the man who changed the world.  The world will only be changed by those with the courage to get up and do something about it.  I’ve said it before and I will say it again, do NOT settle for less than you are worth.  Do NOT settle for a life that leaves you unhappy.  Fight for what you deserve!  If your job isn’t paying you enough, get off your ass and do something about it.  Find a new job, maybe one that makes you happier.  Demand a raise.  Lead a strike.  Do whatever it takes to make yourself heard.  There are so many protests going on in this country, for numerous different reasons: end the famine, restore the economy, stop the war.  Join a cause or start your own but please don’t let yourself become stagnant.  Don’t permit the problems in this world to bring you down.  I’ve allowed it, hell I still allow it but after taking fifteen minutes to watch the Stanford Commencement speech, I no longer want to be the girl who never stood up for her rights; the girl who let the world pass her by.

Thank you, Steve Jobs for helping me find this moment of clarity.  Your legacy will live on for years to come.  May your family find comfort in the lives that you were able to change in your short time on this earth.  May you rest in peace, sir.

“Again, you can’t connect the dots looking foward.  You can only connect them looking backwards.  So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.  You have to trust in something; your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.  Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path and that will make all the difference.”- Steve Jobs