Out of the Woods

Redmon Woods is a happy place. The animals get along, the garden grows, the kids run and play and laugh, and I spend my days loving it all. Lately, though, I’ve made a mistake. I let the world in. And the world right now is not a happy place.

I thought of naming  the bombings and mass shootings, from this year alone, but I knew I wouldn’t get them all. I don’t want to leave anybody out because they are all heartbreaking. With every report I feel like I want to cry, or throw up, or hit something. And I don’t hit. The worst, though, is feeling helpless. I want a bad guy, I want a target, I want there to be somebody we can stop!

Yes, I know: ISIS. But it feels like trying to stop ISIS is like trying to stop everybody with green eyes. (I just picked green eyes randomly. I love many people with green eyes.) There may be more in some places than others, but they’re everywhere. And we know that everyone with green eyes isn’t evil, but how do we know who is who? And what about the evil people with green eyes who wear brown contacts, so we can’t even tell they might be evil. I would never want to see everyone with green eyes targeted, just like I would never want to see all Muslims targeted.

And then there are the local, everyday, mentally ill, unstable individuals, who feel like they want to die, but they want to take as many people as possible with them first. These shootings we actually do have the possibility of stopping, but that would mean some major changes to gun rights, and those rights are more important to some people than protecting the lives of others. Yep, I mean gun control. Not eliminating the 2nd Amendment, not taking away everybody’s guns, not allowing bad guys to have black market guns while good guys get shot in their sleep. I mean not allowing mentally unstable people to easily buy guns. I mean banning guns that have been designed to kill as many people as possible. I mean not allowing the gun industry to sell kits that allow consumers to buy a legal gun, then modify it to something that should be illegal. And don’t tell me that if I had a gun I could protect myself. I DON’T WANT A GUN! I want people who want to hurt people to NOT have guns.

And then, of course, there’s Trump. He’s going to make everything better by threatening to blow up innocent people. He’ll just eliminate everybody with  green eyes. That will fix everything. He knows he’s great, and he expects everybody else to know that, too. If you dare to do anything but agree with him, he’ll call you names, mock you, encourage others to hurt you, or simply take away your press credentials. He frames it as being tough enough or smart enough to not be politically correct. The things he says aren’t politically incorrect, they’re dangerous. He can’t expect the rest of the world to understand that when he says he wants to bomb the shit out of a country, he really means something else. Nobody knows what he means because he doesn’t speak in complete thoughts. And yet, he’s the Republican nominee for president. Why do the majority of Republicans not see what he is?

These things have invaded my little world, and they took my voice. How do I write about ducklings, and spring flowers, and the kids gathering dandelions and blowing wishes into the wind, when there is so much pain and anger and fear in the world? The ugliness has kept me awake at night. I’ve felt angry and sad and helpless. And now, I’m done!

Redmon Woods is a happy place. And even if a lot of the world isn’t happy right now, my little corner of the world is. And, maybe, if I take my voice back, I can help the world be a little happier. Redmon Woods is one small place, and I have just one voice, but my voice is going to be happy again.