Dr. Mike Obsatz, Professor Emeritus at Macalester College
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Dr. Michael Obsatz
Macalester College, St. Paul, MN
I have been studying violence in America and its causes for more than forty years. My book, "Raising Nonviolent Children in a Violent World" was published in 1999, around the time of the Columbine Shooting, and won the 1999 Minnesota Book Award and the 1999 Catholic Press Association Award.
I was invited to the White House in 2003 to meet with folks all over the country, including the President to discuss ways of stopping mass school shootings.
I have learned that we have had over 200 mass shootings since 2022 began. We haven't learned very much in 23 years. We have had numerous school shootings since 1999, including
Parkland and Sandy Hook.
Anger, rage, and violence are a part of a culture that historically focuses on power, hierarchy, scarcity, domination, control, and marginalization of the poor, old, women, GLBTQ, people of color, and Jews, Muslims, etc.
Mass shootings in grocery stores, businesses, churches, mosques, and synagogues are signs of a mass culture in severe pain and denial..
Empire Consciousness has always been part of American culture. All bullying is a result of it. Native Americans have experienced this for centuries. Slavery is the ultimate oppression.
How people view life, others, and spiritual matters impacts their attitudes and behaviors.
Oneness Consciousness sees the inherent worthiness and lovability of all people, and encourages sharing, compassion, and equality and justice for all.
The words, "All Men are Created Equal," did not include men of color, those who are disabled, women, and religious diversity.
School shootings will end only when we:
Start living in Oneness Consciousness.
Stop teaching Empire Consciousness to children from birth.
Eliminate power differentials, and domination of all kinds, including bullying.
Rid our need for labeling, dividing, and focusing on how we are different.
Start seeing the Divinity and worthiness in the Diversity.
Stop denying all the suffering of those who have been oppressed and marginalized.
Examine entitlement, and why people need to believe they have a right to do whatever they want to no matter how it affects the common good.
Limit the amount of guns and automatic weapons, and check carefully the mental capacity of those who own them.
Provide mental health services to all who would harm themselves or others.
Help people develop a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives.
Guards and teachers with guns cannot stop the
amount of violence and destruction we have experienced. A shift in awareness and values is an inside job, not on outside job.