If you pay any attention to the news, you know about the massacre that took place in Las Vegas on Sunday, October 1, 2017. The evidence so far indicates that there was a lone gunman on the 32nd floor of a major hotel who repeatedly shot bullets into a large crowd.
He ended up killing 58 people and wounding 489 other people. The crowd that the gunman shot into was gathered for the Route 91 Harvest Festival, a country music event that is held annually on a 15-acre lot next to Las Vegas Boulevard (formerly U.S. Route 91). This year’s event was attended by more than 22,000 people.
Within hours of the massacre, a number of politicians, Hollywood celebrities, and big-media news broadcasters demanded that the federal government pass new gun-control laws. Within 24 hours of the shooting, several members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives were suggesting that a gun accessory called a “bump stock” be outlawed.
Before long, it seemed as though most people who were in positions of power were in support of banning bump stocks. Prior to the shooting, very few people had ever heard of a bump stock. When reporters interviewed gun shop owners, the reporters found out that most of the owners didn’t have any bump stocks in their stores. The owners told the reporters that no one ever asked for bump stocks. One owner said that he had two bump stocks on the shelf and that both of them had gathered dust over the past several months because no one had shown any interest in them.
A bump stock is a device that can be attached to semi-automatic rifle, allowing the rifle to be fired at a more rapid rate than a rifle in which a person pulls the trigger as fast as he can. The addition of a bump stock does not convert a semi-automatic rifle to a machine gun. It only allows the person who is using the rifle to shoot at a higher rate of speed.
Gun experts have indicated that bump stocks make guns less accurate. Of course, for the madman who killed all those people, accuracy didn’t matter. His goal was to kill as many people as possible by shooting into the large crowd.
If our compassionate and caring lawmakers are able to pass new legislation that bans bump stocks, they’re going to appear in front of the cameras, pat themselves on the back, and act as though they’ve accomplished something that’s very important. In reality, their new prohibition on the use of bump stocks will have no impact on the next madman who decides that he’s going to kill as many people as possible.
It boggles my mind how such a worthless and inadequate remedy can catch fire so quickly. Within two days, our lawmakers, the talking heads in the media, and the self-proclaimed experts in Hollywood worked up such a frenzy that most of our lawmakers in Washington, DC jumped on the bandwagon to outlaw bump stocks.
It’s been a week since the shooting and I haven’t heard one lawmaker, major media personality, or Hollywood celebrity suggest that our nation should stop focusing on frivolous solutions and turn to God for guidance as to how we should be dealing with the evil that exists in our society.
What do you think would happen if several of our lawmakers asked the leaders of all the major religions to come to Washington, DC to testify in congressional hearings and offer suggestions as to whether they believe it would be worthwhile to organize prayer rallies throughout the United States? The purpose of the hearings would not be to pass laws that would force people to pray. The purpose would be to focus attention on the importance of prayer and the need for our nation to turn to God for guidance and protection.
I know it’s wishful thinking, but it’s still a worthwhile proposition to consider.
What if all the American Catholic bishops got together for a special two-day conference to develop a master plan to have multiple prayer rallies throughout our country for the next 10 years. Their plan could include a strategy to invite other Christian denominations to participate in an annual Christian prayer rally in Washington DC, where millions of Christians could gather to pray together. After formulating a master plan, they could go back to their dioceses and begin the process of coordinating and implementing their plan.
Are you aware of any other countries where the bishops have gotten together and encouraged the Catholics in their countries to gather for a national prayer rally?
Something close to that actually happened last month when the bishops of Poland urged all the Catholics in Poland to join in a rosary prayer crusade along the country’s 2,000-mile border. While the prayer crusade was not organized by the bishops, it received the endorsement of the bishops. The crusade was scheduled to occur on October 7, the Feast day of Our Lady of the Rosary. The purpose of the crusade was to pray for the salvation of the country of Poland.
Organizers of the crusade were expecting up to a million people to participate in what they called “Rosary on the Borders.” The event was scheduled to coincide with the anniversary of the Battle of Lepanto, which took place in 1571. That battle was won when the Christian fleet overcame the Muslim Armada, saving Europe from Islamization. The pope at that time was Pius V, and he attributed the victory to the millions of rosaries that were prayed by the citizens of Europe. The date of October 7 was subsequently declared to be the Feast day of Our Lady of the Rosary.
We have more than 323 million people in the United States. The most recent estimate is that there are 77.4 million Catholics in the United States. If our bishops got together and organized rosary rallies throughout the country, do you think they could get one million Catholics to show up for each rally?
Why isn’t this being done? We are in desperate need of the type of leaders who will organize these rallies.
What do you think will provide more protection for our citizens, the banning of bump stocks or massive prayer rallies throughout the United States?
Dear Harry and Georgette – Wouldn’t it be wonderful if PRAYing would be the normal way of reaching Peace in the World! If Rallies are going to be of use to bring about PRAYing on a daily basis, then it could be one solution for bringing God into the lives of each person.
I’m wondering why the “madmen” who are killing others aren’t noticed in the early stages of their “mental intent” to kill. There must be some signs early on that would call attention to his/her actions and in some way, try to prevent these happenings. This may be just a dream I have – one of prevention, rather than an “after the fact” plan of action. So I pray that God have Mercy on the mentally ill and on each of us! Blessings and love. Roberta, csj