Is More Stuff Worth It

Now that the initial shock of the Chardon High School shootings has subsided, we are hearing more about the shooter T.J. Lane. It seems that he suffered from a troubled past including experiencing violence at home. and of course everyone wants to know why this happened.

I'll throw my theory out there. Does anyone wonder if it has anything to do with the continuing erosion of morality in out society? Look at what our children are subjected to every day, on television, movies, the internet, music and video games. We have eroded our families, we no longer teach our children values like we learned, and then we are surprised when something like this happens.

Whose fault is it? I blame no one but us. We are the ones who fell for the crap we were fed back when we were young, the sixties and the seventies in my case, where we turned our backs on religion and the teachings of the church and instead followed the philosophy of "if it feels good do it". It was our pleasure first, full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes. This philosophy not only led to turning our backs on religion and God, but also opened us up to marketers who convinced us how much we needed new "toys", all the latest and greatest gadgets. We have been convinced we all need big houses, big jobs, a college education, everything which cost money.

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This has caused an erosion of the family unit. When I was a kid, my mother was always home when we got out of school. She didn't work until we were all out of high school and then only becasue she wanted something to do. But my generation brought in the Women's Liberation movement, which, coupled with the need for more "stuff" sent more an more women into the work force. Call me sexist, chauvinistic, whatever you want, but this broke up the family unit. It began a vicious cycle, and the more we wanted, the more we had to work, and who suffered? Our children,

We worked and came home too tired to do anything with our kids. We bought them video games, computers, their own televisions, all to keep them entertained. Gone was the nightly gathering around the dinner table talking to each other, discussing everyone's day. Sure, it wasn't always like "Leave it to Beaver " but it was close.

I don't know T.J. Lane or his family, but somehow I guess he is like thousands of others. True, thousands of others haven't started shooting, but there is that chance they could. Our children are exposed to violence every day, as were their parents probably. Not just at home but everywhere.

But we are convinced we need more stuff everyday, we are convinced we are living the good life by working so many hours to support ourselves and to buy our stuff, and so we do it more and more. And then we are surprised when a T.J. Lane pulls out a gun and starts shooting. Is all that stuff worth it?