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Not a Trick Question

by Todd Matson


There are so many of us who feel heartsick and helpless in the face of school shootings which occur over and over with absolutely no action from many in government who would rather profit off gun manufacturers and gun lobbies at the cost of children's lives than take any significant action to stop this madness. As surreal as it is, these senseless mass murders of children have become routine. To add insult to injury, people with mental illness are further stigmatized as potential child killers while toxic masculinity and poison ideology fueling domestic terrorism goes unchecked and anyone can buy and wield weapons of war against innocent children. This poem addresses these matters in the aftermath of yet another school shooting leaving 6 innocent people dead, 3 children and 3 teachers. I hope this poem addresses the surreal and absurd nature of the public and political discourse on these matters. With a broken heart, Todd Matson



Black image with light pink broken heart in the centre.
Image credit: Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By offering thoughts and prayers for dead children?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By banning books as if it’s irrelevant that dead children can’t read?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By banning critical race theory lest dead children learn that enslaved Black people built the White House?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By banning drag queen shows to keep dead children from becoming transexuals?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By making stronger doors to require shooters to shoot out windows to shoot children dead?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By arming teachers because what could possibly go wrong to cause more dead children?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By teaching children to run, hide, fight while they are being rendered dead?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By stigmatizing the mentally ill as wannabe child killers while turning a blind eye to the toxic masculinity and poison ideology of domestic terrorists who leave dead children in their wake?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By twisting the Second Amendment into saying that civilians have as much of a right to own weapons of war as children have the right to die?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


By voting for gun-fetish politicians beholden to gun manufacturers and gun lobbies because no one sells guns better than dead children?


How can we protect our children from being slaughtered in mass shootings?


***



Todd Matson is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in North Carolina. His poetry has been published in The Journal of Pastoral Care and Counseling, Mindfull Magazine, and has been featured in Poetry for Mental Health. He has also written lyrics for songs recorded by a number of contemporary Christian music artists, including The Gaither Vocal Band.

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