What Mayans miscommunicate, tragedy helps clear up

What wasn’t surprising was carrying on like any normal day Saturday after the world was supposed to end.
What was surprising was getting a text from a friend the Tuesday before saying she and the family couldn’t make it to the movies because of a nightmare about it the night before.
If the notion of last Friday being the last day of existence was even remotely in the back of your mind, every day thereafter should be a better reason to act more alive. Some days and tragedies still make it hard though.
Twice in a week, I was on the phone regarding bomb threats to courthouses across the state. Like the dozens of other similar threats recently called in to courthouses across the country, Monroe County’s was quickly cleared. Even hoaxes put you on the edge, but you can blame that on the world we’ve lived in recently.
Take what happened in Connecticut or Columbine and you’ve got the devil at work. Break the lessons your grandparents taught and you’ve got generations’ more of it to come.
They take the Bible out of the classroom, put the mentally troubled on more meds and just hope for the best. We take what the days give us and prayer for them when their plans go wrong.
I’ll scream right along with you about when you say we’re desensitized to violence thanks to TV and video games, but the issue of gun control may be a different story out of my mouth. Arguments about how much the news should and shouldn’t report on tragedies like Sandy Hook are as common as how banning gun sales still won’t stop a psycho.
There’s a difference somewhere between evil and crazy, but there’s a thin line to choose designations. No matter how much all those petty little arguments pull us apart, the bottomline never fails to pull us together.
We paused for a moment of silence Friday morning. We bowed our heads in prayer a couple of hours after that. We heard the church bells ring. We saw it all recapped on the evening news when we got home.
It seems like everytime the horrific gets more horrible, the public counters it with a more stunning act. There are plenty of flags flying where there weren’t before the towers came down and the troops went overseas.
There’s a nervous tick where there wasn’t before the signs went up forbidding costumes at movie theaters. Where there was a sense of security before, there are plans being made to safeguard our schools even more.
The stories ripped from the biggest newspapers in the country are the same stories right here in Monroe County in regards to the latest mass shooting spree. Whereas their photos have mixed candlelight vigils with grieving faces, ours have mixed black, white, young and old with heads bowed for the same cause.
As I said, plenty of petty little arguments pull us apart, but we’re all on the same page for the overall cause when word of tragedies spread via the world wide web or by word of mouth closer to home.
The prayer lists and vigils, conversations of concern, crosses dedicated to the fallen 26 and multi-agency meeting addressing local school safety should be commended. Thanks to those who went above and beyond of just caring to leaving a more pleasant contribution in the wake of the school shooting disaster. You helped bring us all together even more.
Astrology says 2012 enters the Age of Aquarius. It’s the age of love and peace the hippy generations praised and the 5th Dimension sang about in 1969. December 22 said the world is alive and well. Maybe it’s a turn to a new page we can sing and dance along with for years to come.

Ray Van Dusen is the news editor for the Monroe Journal. He can be reached at ray.vandusen@journalinc.com.

About Ray Van Dusen

I've been with the Monroe Journal since Aug. 2009 as a staff writer, but took the role as news editor in late 2012. I'm always looking for interesting story ideas from around Monroe County. You can reach me via email at ray.vandusen@journalinc.com.