Folks, I first should admit…I’m possibly a dinosaur in today’s society:

I think too many people forgetting self-defense and social survival techniques in the process of becoming a nation of willing victims.

I think we’re supposed to call out inept politicians rather than re-elect them.

I think there’s a real disconnect with the meaning of “tolerance”, especially with those supposedly preaching the word at full volume.

However, I think a trend that’s been plaguing our society for decades is worse than ever before:  the need to push blame away from the individual.

This isn’t a new problem.  For most of my life, I saw celebrities, politicians, and everyday people happily and consistently blame their parents, their culture, their choice of recreational substances, their significant others, their LACK of significant others, their pets, their local police, the various state and federal law enforcement agencies, the weather, and anything they can think of to explain away events or behaviors they were involved in.  One can’t simply “lose one’s temper” any longer…no, every outburst must be traced to the treatment by co-workers and customers, the damned obsolete computer at work, the sibling’s dumb romantic problems, the parents’ divorce decades past, and even the rumored great-great-grandparent that was known for yelling at the town mayor.

It’s not YOUR fault, it’s the workplace!  It’s the bloodline!  It’s the vodka!  It’s the pills!  It’s the therapist!  It’s the need for the therapist!

It’s all too often a complete pile of bulls**t.  Come ON, people…!

We had the latest personal detonation very recently, leading to six deaths and many injuries at the hand of a young man that, despite resources and available familial support, decided that the world had to be punished for his inability to get laid.  Elliot Rodgers, 22, apparently felt that his time put in as a “gentleman” was supposed to be some kind of currency toward sex with women; I can only guess that he imagined “I looked at her eyes for that whole conversation!  That should be worth 50 Sex-Entitlement Dollars!” or something similar in his daily activities.  I’m sad to say this isn’t the dumbest mentality I’ve ever heard toward sex, but it definitely had among the most horrid endings.  Elliot apparently shot himself at the end of the chaos, proving that even if he HAD been about to “’round the bases” with some young lady, he would’ve been nutless anyway.

Well, we know who was responsible, so we have some closure…right?  Nope.  We have the media shoveling both gasoline and coal onto the flames, in hopes of getting a long, hot burn out of this.  We can’t have an individual whose personal romantic failures pushed him over the edge, or a man with too few coping skills and too much anger…and we certainly can’t have a person showing mankind’s tendency toward irrational violence.

Nope, it’s all because of the NRA.  Wait, no, gun violence in movies and TV.  It’s those gosh-darned video games!  It’s the misogyny in our culture, the hatred all men have for women, and I’m sure I’ll read more opinions from “experts” that never met the man for days to come.  It can’t be a tragedy about one broken man’s mind, it must be all about weapons, society, huge cultural portrayals of sexual behaviors, and I’m sure we’ll have theories all over the map getting press for weeks to come.  In the meantime, the people needing to deal with their grief and move forward will be pulled back into this tragedy over and over again.

That’s scattershot blame, with the continuing victims being those left behind.  This is both irresponsible and completely devoid of any empathy for the survivors and the friends/family of those taken in the tragedy.
Some of the theories may have some validity, but at the end of the day…a person decides whether or not to load the gun, unsheath the knife, drive to where students are gathered, and all this AFTER deciding to have a whole video manifesto done previously.

The human animal is a vicious best all too often.  This simple truth is ignored because there’s some need to believe that we’ve evolved beyond our murderous histories, put these issues into our past, and aren’t that kind of wicked, inventive creature anymore.  The truth is, we aren’t as far removed as we want to be.  Every person has internal struggles at points, where violence and/or cruelty seem to be options to pain and strife in our lives.  Between those urges and potential actions are…decisions.

This young man made some terrible ones…but HE made them.  All men of the free world didn’t make them, the NRA didn’t make them, even untold millions of drunks and drug users didn’t make those decisions.

Elliot Rodgers made them…that’s where the focus needs to be.

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