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After the Shooting Is Over, the Massacre of the Mind Begins

Updated: Jun 1, 2022

A Poem by Dr. Barry Lubetkin / New York City

The scene outside of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas
The scene outside of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas

Survivors–Memories forever scarred by images of horror.

Friends without faces, torn like paper dolls.

Terror, as they crawled through broken windows with glass piercing their child skin.

Bullet sounds remembered with panic every time a car backfires or a door slams.

Parents–The anguish of wondering, “Did I say ‘I love you’ when I dropped her off?” Choosing the tiniest of coffins and burying a thousand moments of pride and joy.

Raging at the incompetence and cowardice of neighbors who wore police badges.

Weeping tears unknown before, while stroking a teddy bear who has lost its best friend.

America–Shamed and sickened by a government of 50 soulless officials,

Who, like dogs slobbering for a bone, await their next check from the NRA.


Barry Lubetkin, Ph.D. is the co-director and co-founder of the Institute for Behavior Therapy in New York City. The Institute for Behavior Therapy is the oldest private cognitive behavior center in the United States.



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