The Virginia Tech Tragedy and the Sandy Hook massacre share a sad similarity

va tragedy 4-30-07
This morning while cleaning my office I ran across this People magazine. The magazine was dated April 30, 2007. I was struck by the irony that I would find this magazine during this time of national mourning regarding a heartbreakingly similar incident. The magazine featured all 33 victims of the Virginia Tech massacre along with a short profile of each victim. The gunman’s first victims were senior Ryan Clark, 22, freshman Emily Hilscher, 18 and freshman Reema Samaha, 18. The gunman killed 33 people that day and then he killed himself, but who remembers the victims? There friends and relatives do, but sadly we do forget. We don’t mean to but life marches on. Now we are confronted with another killer who some are saying was always odd, but over the years he became a recluse and no one knew what had happened to him until he came out from the shadows and killed 20 precious children and 6 very brave adults. Everyone says this will be the tipping point, but what will actually change? We live in a violent world. We see so much that we are desensitized to it. We bring it into our homes through television, computers and video games. Most of us are sane enough to know that this is not real, but do we hold some responsibility for making violence a form of entertainment? All of this is now part of the national conversation. Over the past few days as we have shopped for Christmas I have seen so many happy children out smiling and laughing counting the days until Santa comes to town, but my heart still hurts for the 20 children* that will not be getting up early in anticipation of the arrival of Santa, they will not be here with their families to enjoy another Christmas and that is a tragedy, but hopefully we will honor their memory by making some real meaningful changes, and to just say gun control is the begining of the conversation not the endpoint.
*There were children of all religions killed in the massacre.

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