"The year 2017 brought the deadliest mass shooting in modern history to the United States, which has become home to more gun massacres than any other country in the world.
The response offered by many of our political leaders, both Democrat and Republican, has been to focus on the role of mental illness in such shootings. The day after Stephen Paddock took to a hotel room in Las Vegas with 23 firearms and murdered 59 people this past October, President Donald Trump told reporters that Paddock was “sick” and “demented,” even as evidence suggested Paddock did not have a confirmed mental health disorder.
Trump was also quick to blame mental illness on the mass shooting at a Texas church in early November, saying at press briefing the following day that it the tragedy was not “a guns situation” but instead “a mental health problem at the highest level” (Laura Kiesel).
Uhh. Yeah. And SIN. But she goes on:
As we begin a new year, it’s time to have a more nuanced discussion about what might really be to blame for the trend of mass shootings in America—as well as the gun violence epidemic more broadly. No, it isn’t mental illness. It’s gender. If we want to stop the problem of mass shootings, we need to fix the problem of toxic masculinity.
While most mass shooters in the past 35-years have not been found to have a serious mental illness, nearly all of them do have one thing in common: their sex. Of the 96 mass shootings committed since 1982, all but two were committed by men. Most of them were white. (That's bad too, we are told.)
In fact, men don’t just constitute almost all mass shooters in recent history; they are also responsible for the vast majority of gun-associated deaths in the country. Men own guns at triple the rate of women in the U.S., at 62 percent compared to 22 percent—and also commit suicide at nearly triple the rate of women.
Well, yes. Guns are mostly a guy thing, like Tannerite, Caterpillar bulldozers and bottle rockets. Nothing wrong with that, I have some of each.
She goes to decry domestic violence, suicide and drinking---which we also decry. The difference is, for Laura Kiesel, just being male is reason enough for guilt. Throw in a dash of culpability for being white (caucaSIN) and you have the perfect stigma for intrinsic blameworthiness. She gets in one last shot at the opposite sex before ending:
To be sure, a variety of factors are associated with committing serious violence, such as a history of binge drinking, childhood abuse, living in a neighborhood with a high rate of violent crime and experiencing stressful life events. But being a male is often listed as one of the top two predictive risk factors for committing serious violence in peer review papers on the topic—more than any mental health diagnosis.
What could motivate this gal to deliver a guilty verdict on half of humanity? Well, she's a liberal. Her web page bio:
I’m a journalist, essayist, poet and novelist (basically, a WRITER of almost all trades), as well as a feminist, social justice activist, eco-warrior, animal lover and all-around iconoclast (Laura Kiesel).
Let's be honest here. There are wonderful things happening in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, for which we are grateful to God.
At the same time, a spirit similar to the above bio is coming into our Church in certain quarters. It is found in embryo throughout the Division, rising sharply among Adventist Academia (and leaders) and seen in abundance in our online nemesis. Liberalism, purchased from an empty wagon, is helping to fuel the twin diversions of Adventist feminism and sentimental sexual license (homosexuality). While I am not naive enough to believe conservatism has every answer (the One true Jesus is the Answer) liberalism has wrought untold damage in our Church, justified at first as a corrective against legalism. But legalism is NOT the only enemy the Church faces. It is lawlessness that is destroying our world tonight.
If you’ve followed the NAD Facebook page for a few years, you may know that the NAD has a thing for marches, Social Justice-type marches in particular. With this in mind, I find it painfully inconsistent that they were completely silent on the March for Life, on Friday.
March for Life is the largest annual social march. It’s about the right to life, which should be right up their alley as a Commandment-keeping people.
But you won’t be hearing anything from the NAD on the right to life...on Friday or ever. That’s because NAD leadership doesn’t believe in the right to life. They believe in a lot of social causes, and aren’t afraid to make it known, but this just isn’t one of them.
The reason that NAD is not interested in the March for Life is this: For many of them, Social Justice has replaced the Everlasting Gospel as the ultimate expression of human obedience and fulfillment. And, Social Justice is already committed to abortion rights, marketed freely through its sub-text "Reproductive Justice."
Back to the Story
The Everlasting Gospel offers hope to people like Laura Kiesel, replacing a false worldview of feminism and condemnation with the panoramic view of redemptive history. That leads to repentance, joy, freedom and forgiveness. And most of all, truth. But people like her could end up alienated from truth if we as a Church buy into the empty folklore of Social Justice. Let's love people enough to give them the Everlasting Gospel.
Check out this statement by another woman, this one unshackled by the bitterness of gender denunciation:
"There are those who, in their inquiries concerning the existence of sin, endeavor to search into that which God has never revealed; hence they find no solution of their difficulties; and such as are actuated by a disposition to doubt and cavil seize upon this as an excuse for rejecting the words of Holy Writ. Others, however, fail of a satisfactory understanding of the great problem of evil, from the fact that tradition and misinterpretation have obscured the teaching of the Bible concerning the character of God, the nature of His government, and the principles of His dealing with sin.
It is impossible to explain the origin of sin so as to give a reason for its existence. Yet enough may be understood concerning both the origin and the final disposition of sin to make fully manifest the justice and benevolence of God in all His dealings with evil. Nothing is more plainly taught in Scripture than that God was in no wise responsible for the entrance of sin; that there was no arbitrary withdrawal of divine grace, no deficiency in the divine government, that gave occasion for the uprising of rebellion. Sin is an intruder, for whose presence no reason can be given. It is mysterious, unaccountable; to excuse it is to defend it. Could excuse for it be found, or cause be shown for its existence, it would cease to be sin. Our only definition of sin is that given in the word of God; it is "the transgression of the law;" it is the outworking of a principle at war with the great law of love which is the foundation of the divine government" (Great Controversy, page 493).