This Is America by Relentless Aaron

Mass shootings, random acts of violence, pain and suffering…

Tonight, somewhere in the world there are families experiencing great grief. The random school shootings yesterday are leaving empty beds, troubled hearts, helpless and lost moms and dads… grief, pain and suffering all at once. 





Have we forgotten? Just months ago there was a great outcry from the young, angry and frustrated people marching all over the nation. Outraged. Loud. Fed up. And justly so, people are struggling for an answer to something where there have been no answers. Underneath it all i’ve been saying for many years that the way to address these tragic circumstances is with love. On the other hand I want to remind you that we are all to blame. For sure, Childish Gambino, JCole and even Drake with his million/dollar philanthropic efforts are certainly refreshing to the music scene. However, this world, or at least a large portion of it, agrees with violence and recklessness and misbehavior. It gets the most views sells the most advertisement and is usually the lead story at 5 o’clock. Over the past four decades I’ve watched how we’ve digressed from a Godspell, Partridge family, Brady Bunch-world to the bloody shit we see on tv and our communication devices everyday. The fighting, the weapons, the rage and senseless killings, all of it complete with soundtracks and commercials and endorsements of the greatest kind. Our vulgar, radical voices agree with the vulgar, radical personalities behind the music, tv and films. And then the content is not really censored at all since it’s embraced at the biggest sports arenas that drive the greatest audiences whether it’s music or sports. Tell me that there are censored versions of this and I’ll laugh at you, knowing full well that the clean version still promotes the dirty version. And the dirty version still promotes my point. Jesus. Did I miss the part where we replaced Neil Diamond with the latest raunchy rap at basketball games? And is that our local news agreeing with and promoting the hit TV shows today, essentially embracing violence and all things bloody and random? 

It feels as if someone tossed us all into the lions den, drenched in barbecue sauce. We are all likely to get bit. The ones hiding in the back of the crowd? Sure there are many bodies shielding the worst of the attack; however there’s no doubt that even the insulated and isolated among us are affected even if in denial of the realities at hand.

So it’s not rocket science that things not only have gotten worse, but they’re getting worse. Once upon a time it was “The Golden Rule,” the Bible and some sort of moral compass that we were taught to adhere to.

The books, films, TV and music; all of it has channeled death and mayhem. It has thrusted and force-fed violent, pornographic content to impressionable, already mentally unstable human beings that are now challenged with, exposed to, copying, mirroring and even imitating what we see. The most obvious of these are folks that are mentally disturbed. The least obvious of these are people that are just not loved. And wherever the roulette wheel stops, YOU ARE NEXT. Your town, your school, your post office, your work environment, some random public park, movie theater, a nursery school? How about an old folks home? Are they next? What’s the worst that can happen? 


With so many possibilities, we cannot ignore the idea that the world is the Oyster of that next miserable, unloved human being who wants attention, who’s frustrated and imbalanced, with an ax to grind. This individual has access to some poison, some explosive device, some weapon, or some automobile. He or she even has the mental capacity to carry out some dastardly evil deed. Most importantly, this person is possibly living right next-door to you. They have a motive; this motive might be revenge, or the want for a hug. This motive might be that this person wants to be heard. It just might be that this person has been slighted or worse robbed of his or her ability to survive in such an entitled society. What does entitled society mean? Well to the one who is realizing a deficit in his or her life, entitled people have good jobs and status. Entitled people have those great relationships, connections and geographic conveniences. Entitled people follow those practices and routines that are set up to ignore the disenfranchised and oppressed people among us. And while there is so much to consider, so many levels to examine, the instant way of addressing this random virus that is traveling from east to west coast is to open your heart and show love to those around you. Yeah yeah this may seem real kumbaya in a world full of flying bullets and immanent threats, but on the fly, in that very instant before the trigger is pulled, kumbayah might be all you got. Even if you have a bulletproof vest and arm guards all around you there’s still those outside of your fortress that you care about and love. And just as they matter to you, so too will that pain touch you inside of your insulated world. 

Finally, because my commentary is not likely to reach the individual who needs it most, I put you to the task fellow readers and those who My words reach… i’m not suggesting that we erase all the ugly content in the world. What I am suggesting is that we embrace a balance. Or at least,  embrace our neighbors. I’m suggesting that while we are vigilant and protective and cautionary, we must also be kind, and considerate, and peaceful. Love someone near you. Help someone near you. Lend a helping hand or at least an ear so that they might be heard. You may be saving a life.







World's Leading Urban Lit Author is also Publisher, Film Maker and marketing guru.

View more posts from this author
× How can I help you?