There was a tragedy in Tucson last week which involved the shooting deaths of six innocent people and the wounding of more than a dozen, including the congress woman, Gabrielle Giffords, who represents that area. I’m sure you’re aware of it; you’d have to live in a hole to not to be.
At this writing, this horrific event does not seem motivated as much by politics (e.g. the Oklahoma Bombing) as it is by the fact that the shooter was mentally unstable, such as those at Columbine. (I’m sure this is small comfort to the families of the victims.) The fact that I can list examples (and I could provide more) of various shootings “by name” – and that you can understand the references – is a sad, discerning comment about the level of violence in which we find ourselves. As for the cause of the event, finger-pointing began per schedule. Blame will be assessed, and as with a New Year’s resolution, promises will be made. For a brief moment, our awareness will be heightened and actions might be be taken. Unfortunately, also like those resolutions, these commitments will be abandoned in short order.
One positive outcome arising from this tragedy (if “positive” can be the label applied to anything that comes of it) is the heightened scrutiny on the tone of the political discourse during this fractious era. Only time will tell if it was a partial cause in the shooter’s break with humanity; but it cannot be a bad thing to examine. [Read more…]