If your soul’s in the right state it won’t matter much if someone came in to kill you. Still, it’s a shame that gun violence is so out of control in the US that people would even have to think of it. The idea of coming to Mass armed with a gun is an idea that most non-Americans in the developed world (to say nothing of many from developing countries) would find absurd and mindboggling.
I don’t follow the news for various reasons, but I know from a group of Appalachians I follow on Facebook that not too long ago (2/3 months maybe?) there was a shooting at a small church in Tenneessee. Eventually one of the men went to his car and got his own gun and if I remember shot the shooter.
If I’m not mistaken, the shooter was black and the victims were white, yet there was no public outcry or calls for legislation to be made to ban militant black organizations or anti-slavery monuments like there was with Confederate flags and monuments with the Charleston shooting. I feel less “safe” knowing that monuments dedicated to my ancestors and their countrymen are being destroyed for no good reason and that the remaining historical relics related to my Southern heritage are in danger of being forever lost because Americans, as compared to other westerners, are so “sensitive” and cowardly about race relations that they’ll easily assent to a mindless non-solution to gun violence, and, us usual, scapegoat Southern people, symbols, and heritage.
It reveals that the nation is so divided, scared, and confused that people are willing to believe that flags and historical monuments can be the cause of gun violence and that removing them will somehow stop the same. I feel that going to Mass with stupid people is scarier than the possibility of a gunman bursting in. The latter is unlikely, but the former is basically a given.
Some men in my town like to open carry their handguns, I assume as a way to assert their manliness, and I’m not afraid of them. Nor am I afraid of the large amount of men and women in my area who own firearms that they use for hunting and whatever else people do with guns in their free time when they’re not killing people. I’m not afraid that any of these gunowners, despite the general anti-Catholic attitude in these parts, is going to show up at Mass and start shooting us. The ones who do end up shooting and/or killing usually kill friends, lovers, or family members in domestic disputes. In the bigger towns, it’s usually over drugs/money. The likelihood of a “deranged maniac” coming to Mass to shoot folks is so low that it’s simply not a concern. Even if it were a great concern, I would rather rely on God’s protection rather than carry a deadly weapon into a House of God.
I understand that because gun violence is such a huge problem in the US, many people feel the need to own and carry a weapon in the interest of self-defense. I used to support gun “rights” so I know all the arguments for it, but you know, even that fellow in TN who shot the dude kept his gun in his car, NOT on his person. The fact that people even consider whether bringing deadly weapons into churches is a good idea or not says how crazy this state of affairs is.