Recording the past is mostly in the hands of the elderly, people like me who are involved in genealogical pursuits. The future is in the hands of youth.
When I see children in Florida, and elsewhere around the continent – and the world – rising up to protest the proliferation and acceptance of the use of guns, pleading for more protection, demanding more responsibility from their leaders, my confidence and hope for the future of our civilization is raised. The massive March For Our Lives this past weekend was heartening! These important demonstrations across the US were supported by young people from around the world.
In Canada, gun violence is not the problem it is in other parts of the world but we are not immune. The proportion of crimes involving guns is much lower here, as is the number of guns on a per capita basis. Guns are more controlled but still they find their way into the country by illegal means and the use of them in violent encounters is increasing. We in Canada, as in other countries, need to become more aware of this escalating trend.
It feels shameful to be part of a generation that seems to have come to believe the answer to conflict, of any size and in any place, is more conflict; the answer to gun violence if more guns; the answer to hate is more hate; the answer to distrust is more distrust!
This is not an indictment of all gun-owners. Many members of my family have been responsible hunters, educated from a young age on the safe use and storage of firearms. Certainly farmers and ranchers may have a need to protect their property and livestock from potential perils. But there are many types of weapons designed only for killing people and far too many of them have ended up in the hands of criminals and unstable individuals. That cannot be justified under any circumstances.
Prospects are beginning to look brighter as we witness teenagers with more apparent common sense than that of their parents and grandparents. They may also have more compassion for their fellow citizens, in their own country and around the world.
Wish your children and grandchildren luck and give them all the support they need to build an even better world!