By Isabella @TheWandCarver
What can I say that hasn’t already been said? Still, as admiring of New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern as I am, I feel I must give thanks for such a strong and wonderful person who dares to do something rarely seen currently, and that is to be a political leader of decisive and swift action on a problem which threatens to envelope much of the world… the lack of gun control.
It is not only about that, because Scotland and England have nipped guns in the bud [as best they can] since Dunblane  and Hungerford . I say “as best they can” because there will always be those in possession of illegal firearms, albeit, maybe not nearly so many as legal ones, and not nearly so many as some countries, full stop. But my admiration for PM Ardern goes further than this.
She refused to say his name.
This wonderful leader not only nipped ‘weapons of war’ in her beloved country from being easily possessed ever again on that day, but she also took away the one thing that a mass murderer will want most [if he lives through his spree] and that is fame. I saw his name once in the news and then promptly forgot it. I couldn’t utter it now if I wanted to. It was a decision I had made just before PM Ardern’s declaration and it thrilled me to know when she did, that she and I were completely on the same page.
I read reports of mass-shootings from the US in my World news feed and in every story, the shooter is named… several times and by many news agencies. Of course, there is no doubt it is mentioned many, many times in cable news reports and in other ways. The focus is not where it should be, on the people who were senselessly murdered but all concentrated on the murderer, whether still alive or killed in the shooting by police.
The focus should be on the people who were killed and those they left behind. The focus should be on the heroes of the day such as Linwood mosque worshipper, Abdul Aziz, who saved countless lives on the day of the New Zealand mosque shootings by bravely seeing off the shooter from his mosque. And, of course, PM Jacinda Ardern.
Would it help if they no longer gave them the notoriety the killers think they are due? What if they did not ever say their name? What if they reported “a white male, aged 28, was arrested for the killings” and left it at that? I believe it could make a difference. I think it could go a long way in preventing more mass murders. My reasoning is this – mass murders are different than the bog-standard murder where a husband or wife is angry and goes to their place of employment and shoots the offending partner. Maybe one or two others for good measure. Those are crimes of passion, and the shooter doesn’t think. These are no more excusable than the other, however, if he or she waited a day or two the possibility of it happening may likely be avoided because the heightened anger of the moment may be softened. And, much of the time the shooter is sorry afterwards. In a mass murder, it is done because of a] racial motivation or b] religious motivation. Mass murders are almost always born of a deep, simmering hatred. Mass murders are planned for. Mass murders are meant to take out every person of the kind the shooter is after. The mass murderer is never sorry. The mass murderer wants to go down in a blaze of glory – they are fully prepared to die by police. They are positive in their minds that their name will live on in infamy. And, if they live? They expect to enter prison after sentencing to a round of ‘Hail, fellow, well met’. They believe that in prison they will be exemplified as the conquering hero. Say my name, he cries. No…please don’t.
It is a small thing to ask. It isn’t asking to re-write your Constitution but if news agencies in the US and any other countries where mass murders happen frequently would refuse to speak the name of the mass murdering suspect, refuse him his fifteen minutes of fame, refuse him going down in the blaze of glory which he feels he will receive for his misdeeds; if this precedence could save at least some people’s lives because the person who might want to murder them does not because he knows he will be utterly disregarded and no chance of being made a hero of in some people’s eyes…would this not be worth the doing? I am convinced it would be.
Thank you, PM Ardern, for this beautiful wisdom. May the softest admonishment ever spoken make the loudest sound the world over. Say only the names of the good and brave. Say only the names of those whom have given all to save others. Say only the names of the fallen. And do say her name – the strongest and most empathetic world leader I have seen in decades, Jacinda Ardern.
Many thanks for reading this blog. I felt it needed saying and I hope it does some small justice to all the loving, good, and strong people I speak of. It breaks my heart that a person can not be safe in their house of worship; this is the one place in my mind where no one should feel anything but at peace with their God, Gods, Goddesses, whatever their names. If you feel the same, please share. Warmest blessings to all whom wander this way.