Sunday, December 16, 2012

Signs of optimism

It feels uncomfortable to talk about optimism in the wake of 27 people murdered on Friday - 20 of whom were only 6 and 7 years old. But its also true that for every Adam Lanza in this world, there are several Victoria Soto's and Kaitlin Roig's. I think its critical that we remember that in days like these.

I know that as President Obama travels to Newtown today, that will be part of his message to us. As he has on occasions like this in the past, I'm confident that he will remind us that we should never give in to the despair. a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized -– at a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who happen to think differently than we do -– it’s important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we’re talking with each other in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds...

The loss of these wonderful people should make every one of us strive to be better. To be better in our private lives, to be better friends and neighbors and coworkers and parents...

They believed -- they believed, and I believe that we can be better. Those who died here, those who saved life here –- they help me believe. We may not be able to stop all evil in the world, but I know that how we treat one another, that’s entirely up to us.

And I believe that for all our imperfections, we are full of decency and goodness, and that the forces that divide us are not as strong as those that unite us.

That’s what I believe, in part because that’s what a child like Christina Taylor Green believed...

I want to live up to her expectations. I want our democracy to be as good as Christina imagined it. I want America to be as good as she imagined it. All of us -– we should do everything we can to make sure this country lives up to our children’s expectations.
The ray of optimism that is fighting for space in my heart these days comes from my belief that - like me - the majority of Americans will see that its finally time to make some changes when we failed our babies so desperately. Those who fight any reasonable restrictions on guns think that they can quietly wait this one out and assume we'll forget. They are going to face a rude awakening this time - we've reached a tipping point on this one.

This morning Senator Feinstein promised to introduce an assault weapons ban on the first day of the next Congress. I defy anyone to make an argument about why these kinds of weapons that recently gunned down 27 people in an elementary school within a matter of minutes are a necessary component of our freedom. That kind of thing won't fly anymore...not after this one. Our more precious right is to keep and bear our babies.

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