It was such a strange feeling waking up and learning of the shooting in Las Vegas. I followed it closely on the news all day and checked for updates on my phone. I wasn’t sure if I would even write on the topic. Mostly because in the morning, before I turned on the news I saw twitter listing the death count at 50 people and 200 wounded. I felt no emotion or surprise, nothing. I wanted to slap myself as I read the words just so I could feel something.
I’ve felt guilty ever since reading that first tweet. Am I losing my compassion?
Finally, after hearing personal accounts of the violence, compassion, and bravery that took place at the scene I was able to feel emotion. Why did it take so long for me to have a response? Shouldn’t the tweet listing 50 dead be enough for me?
I’ve realized that this hatred and violence in the form of mass killings has been a part of the news cycle my entire life. I was 8 when my parents explained as best they could what took place at Columbine. It was two years later that I had to wrap my young mind around the 9/11 attacks. Fast forward to the theater shooting and Sandy Hook in 2012. I haven’t gone to a movie since without feeling a chill as the lights go down. Can’t forget the lives of the children lost in the Sandy Hook shooting. Is there a worse thought than young kids being gunned down? What about the Orlando Night Club shooting? These are just the ones that are sticking out at the moment. There are so many more instances to consider, lives to mourn.
I don’t want to be numbed by these events. I want to continue to live my life. Not in fear that that one day a tragedy may affect someone I know.
I try to include a lesson in most of my posts. I don’t have a lesson to share today. I think the lesson should be found in those lost and those that survived yesterday’s event. Consider their legacy and how the new perspective we may have from this event can lead to a brighter future.
I’m not even sure how to end this. Maybe just by saying, be safe, be compassionate, be a helper, be aware, protect your loved ones. We can all do better.