When you lose someone to a mass shooting, it’s incredibly easy to lash out at the weapon used. Emotion overrides everything else in your brain, at least for a moment, and you want to lash out. Since the media has spent years trying to paint guns as responsible for mass shootings, guess what gets the blame during these emotional times?
But the family of victim Alaina Housley seems to be a little more rational than most. While I’m sure they’re not necessarily fans of firearms at the moment, according to what they said to CBS News, they aren’t necessarily thinking gun control is the only way forward either.
His wife, Alaina’s aunt, actress Tamera Mowry Housley, is looking for answers. “Alaina was beautiful,” she said. “And she was my friend. Yes, there needs to be a change, but all the noise … nothing’s been done.”
And it’s because of that – despite being in the midst of so much grief – that they all agreed to talk to us. Alaina, they say, would have wanted to dig deeper than politics.
Adam said, “If I was to walk out of here and the first thing I was to say was, you know, ‘Gun control,’ guess what? Half the country (snaps fingers), [conversation] ends.”
“And we don’t want the conversation to end,” said Tamera.
“It can’t this time,” said Adam.
“We want it to continue.”
Cowan asked. “Have you been able to wrap your head around talking about her in the past tense?”
“Yes,” said Arik.
How come? “We don’t believe that her voice will die. We believe that there is a message that’s out there.”
“What’s the message?” Cowan asked.
“To us, it’s to be kind to one another. It’s to put down your technology, put down your phones and look at somebody and have a conversation. It’s not about gun control; this message is about doing something bigger, to be with your community, to love one another.”
“All things that you don’t have to legislate?”
“Right. Exactly,” said Arik.
You know, I have no issue with that.
The moment someone starts talking gun control, I stop taking them seriously. I see them not as someone worth having a discussion with, but an enemy. At that moment, I understand that they have it in their head that there’s no possible solution other than restricting my rights.
But mass shootings are complicated things. There are a lot of things that go into making a mass shooter, things we would do well to take a look at and see if we can cut these things off long before they get to the stage of someone looking to get a gun.
What Housley’s family is talking about is something that has nothing to do with any of that, it seems. Instead, it’s more about making the most of your time here.
Honestly? That’s probably the most positive response I’ve ever seen to someone who lost a loved one in a mass shooting. I know damn good and well that during my own time, I couldn’t have suggested that.
I sincerely hope people will take that message to heart. I think it’s something we all need to do.
Let’s do that and stop demanding to restrict people’s rights for no good reason.