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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A Tragedy Unfolds

The massacre at Virginia Tech yesterday has struck a chord in everyone. The killing of 32 people and the wounding of 29 others, students and professors alike, while in their classes and dorms. The murders committed by a troubled gunman who was also a student at the school. I’ve been watching the news and reading article after article about this tragic event. I am transfixed by the individual stories of heroism displayed by many, caught up in the despair and anguish felt by the families, and horrified by the cold and calculating mind of the killer who ended up taking his own life after his acts of terror. The Primetime News coverage showed the beautiful, sprawling campus while the videos and photos captured by the students showed the dark horror that transpired inside.

Since first hearing about the event, I’ve been unable to get it out of my mind. Such terror that must have gripped the victims not knowing what was going on until it was too late. Such sadness and tragedy in an institution for higher learning. Such a waste of life, especially since the list of victims included promising students and esteemed professors. Such sadness for the parents who are watching the tragedy unfold in the news but unable to reach their kids and find out if they are safe. Such a tragedy for all of us trying to understand how this could have happened and what we could have done to prevent it.

The media has been playing the tragedy from all angles – on tv, over the radio, in the newspapers, and on the internet. Everyone seems to have an opinion, a new twist to the story, a new scoop about the killer or the long list of victims. Experts have come out of the woodwork and have talked about the lax gun laws in Virginia, the lack of security of campuses across the US, and even the role media has played in spawning violence among the youth. Before we all get on a soapbox with each of our own agendas, I think we need to keep in mind the sadness of today, the loss of human lives, and the loss of a sense of security, freedom and hope.

As we go on with our lives and come to grips with this senseless tragedy, let us keep our family and friends close. Let us remember to say a prayer of thanks for life. And let us pray for peace for the students, their families, and for us all.

1 comment:

jol said...

I join you in your prayer for peace and an end to all forms of violence.