• author
    • Maya Stiles Parsons Spier

      Columnist, Editor-in-Chief
    • April 18, 2013 in Columnists

    Open letter to the 46 senators: was it worth it?

    To the 46 miscreant elected officials who chose to kill the reasonable gun control legislature —  do you have a clue what you have done? Let’s make this concrete for you.

    Sometime within the next few hours, a bullet will tear through the tender baby flesh of an innocent child. The sweet little heart might be what’s shredded. Perhaps the brain. The child will be thrown halfway across the floor. If there’s more than one bullet, those bullets will tear through the little body, destroying tissue to the point where it can scarcely be identified. The bowels and bladder will release and the stench of death will begin. There may be a moan as the air releases from the body and then silence. If the head is still intact, the eyes will be half open, staring at nothing.

    By now, the caretakers — siblings, parents, whomever, will have reacted. Anguished shrieks will turn to action as they run for their murdered child, but it’s too late. The little one they cradled, that they loved, that meant everything is dead. There will be no giggling tubby baths.  No more stories read.  No more tickles as the little one is tucked into bed.  There will be no school plays, or football games, or proms. There will be no graduations. There will be no falling in love. No grandchildren. No watching in pride as their child improves the world. No sweet old age. No, it’s all been stopped in just that moment.

    After the police come and take the body, it will be left to the family to clean the blood, the fragments of tissue that are all they have left of their beloved child. No agency comes in and handles this. Somebody will be taking brush and sponge and pail and scrubbing away the last scraps of a tiny, precious life.

    That little one whom the parents never let out of their sight will be taken on a cold, silent journey alone to the morgue.  In search of an exact cause of death, the coroner will open that little body that had been so tenderly loved and nurtured and will take it down to its constituent parts.  And then that little one will be slid into a body bag and closed into a drawer until it’s time for the funeral home to come retrieve the body.  They will take it and reconstruct what they can and cover what they can’t.  They will apply makeup and spray hair until that vibrant, laughing, dancing child looks like a stiff, pale, distorted doll – and that will be the family’s last memory of their baby.

    So you do you think it was worth it?  Can you actually defend defeating a reasonable gun control law that might have kept some murdering bastard, or a domestic abuser, or even a severely mentally ill individual from owning the gun that killed this child?  Was it worth the grandmother who delivers the burial outfit because the parents are incapable of it?  Worth parents screaming and collapsing on the tiny coffin?  Worth all the lives that will never truly know joy again; lives that are broken forever?  Worth knowing that the child who was afraid of the dark will now be buried in it, cold and deep?

    Really? Then I want to hear you defend your choice loud and long and in detail, and look this nation – and those parents – in the eye while you do it. Go ahead. I dare you.


      • Eva Balga

      • February 15, 2018 at 8:25 pm
      • Reply

      Nightmarishly heartbreaking.


        • Maya Spier Stiles North

        • February 16, 2018 at 2:50 pm
        • Reply

        It seemed to me that they didn’t get the reality of it. Now I suspect that they wouldn’t care even if they did.



    Leave a Comment