It does not appear as if anyone's mind has been changed or modified in the least regarding their particular position.
I participated somewhat with a couple of comments.
Has my mind been changed?
I am not immune to the thoughts presented by either side.
One thing I've noticed, however, is that there is much blaming going on from both quarters. Government, guns, people, politics, permissiveness, parenting, laws, liberals, and outlaws are all catching some of the blame for Adam Lanza's terrorism that day.
Blaming someone or something has yet to solve any of my personal problems. It is only when I take responsibility for my actions and results can any progress be made toward improvement.
Needless to say, I was brought up short while reading the comments to that blog and the thought occurred to me, "You are to blame."
How is that so?
I live in south Alabama. I have never been to Connecticut. I don't own a gun. I didn't know Adam Lanza, nor any of the people he harmed. How am I to blame for what happened there?
I am not to blame directly, but indirectly.
I gather this from Jesus' teaching that I am to love my neighbor. A lawyer, trying to justify himself, asked, "Who is my neighbor?" (Luke 10:29) And Jesus gave us the story that is commonly known as The Good Samaritan:
A man was beaten, robbed, and left for dead. People passed him by without stopping to help. They each had very good reasons--couldn't be bothered; in a hurry; against my religion. Eventually a man from Samaria (people basically considered as outcasts) stopped and helped the man. He took him to a hotel and told the clerk to take care of him and he would pay the bill. Jesus asked who was the neighbor, to which the obvious answer was the Samaritan.
It is that concept which drives this idea that I am somewhat responsible for the horror of Sandy Hook.
Whom have I not affected, or affected negatively, that could have had an influence that would have reached to Newtown?
How much kindness and love am I spreading in the world on a daily basis? Or, in reverse, how much negative energy am I putting into the universe each day?
The Buddhist concept of "anatman" basically means that nothing can exist in absolute independence of other things or arise of its own accord. This is similar to Jesus' teaching about the Samaritan, and His statement in John 15:5 that "Apart from me you can do nothing."
My actions and thoughts in south Alabama have a rippling effect into the rest of the world, including Newtown, Connecticut.
I also have not contacted my representatives and told them that even though I am an ideological pacifist, I am opposed to any effort to take away the people's right to own a gun or guns. Therefore, I am partially responsible for the efforts of the government in favor of gun-control.
I have not reached out to those involved in the debate over the issue of gun-control and challenged them to temper their arguments with love and respect for those in opposition. Therefore, I am partially responsible for more of the negative energy that is going out into the universe and affecting mixed up kids like Adam Lanza.
Before you try to tell me that I take too much on myself, I ask you to recall the closing argument from the movie "A Time To Kill" with Matthew McConaughey and Samuel L. Jackson.
What have you done to influence a potential Adam Lanza to change his course?