Lewiston’s tragedy will not end because it has left the family and friends of the 18 innocent victims alive and hurting like they have never hurt before. Couldn’t we do better here in just our own state?
Here is what we know – Maine’s population is very small in relation to its landmass; our law enforcement and our mental health communities are overwhelmed and need more funding and, even more importantly, they need our empathy and our help. Yes, I am a liberal; and even as a visible liberal, I also like that Maine folk continue to hunt. I don’t belong to the NRA but I understand and accept that almost 50% of Maine households have firearms. I also know that for at least the 28 years that I have lived in Starks, in vast Somerset County, that nearly 50% of all homicides are domestic violence related. Our terrorism is personal… What if we did things differently?
How about, when you know that your brother’s wife is leaving him, and that your brother is distraught and scared and upset and angry … how about you, as his sister (or it could be you, his mom or dad of friend or brother) ask him politely and sincerely and in kindness if you can hold his gun for a little while… Why can’t we lean in… why not help prevent harm. It could be your brother, or son, or daughter or father or mother or your best friend… they will only likely say “no” but they may not… as least they will know that you really SEE the hurt and upset… and maybe, they will know and feel your love and will let you protect them from themself for a little while… who knows, it could work. Guns don’t kill people, people do that, and here in Maine, most often people kill those they love, or as in Lewiston, massacre those in a setting where the loved one was likely to be… We need to help our friends and family.
Carol Riemer Coles
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