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Thursday, December 13, 2007

A tortured comparison

I have little time, but wanted to comment on the church shooting in Colorado before it became such old news no one remembered. I already had to search CNN for the story.

Among the sad fact of this story are that the twenty-four-year-old shooter killed two teenage girls, he wounded three other people, the church had (and evidently needed) an armed security guard, and the man used his assault rifle to ultimately kill himself. He also quoted Harris and Klebold of the Columbine High School shooting, posting, "I'm coming for EVERYONE soon and I WILL be armed to the @.%$ teeth and I WILL shoot to kill." CNN described this as "the same wording used by Harris, with the exception of symbols used to replace an expletive."

My reaction to this is the same as my reaction to a natural disaster potentially made worse by global warming. [That's the tortured comparison, BTW.] I don't think dramatic quick action will work--banning firearms, banning the names Harris & Klebold, banning black clothes. I also don't think blaming the victims works, church goers or shoreline livers. But I do think there is a climate that should be changed. And I think we as humans have the capacity to do it.

I think caring for the lost and the lonely in our society will require a rainbow of efforts from from parents and friends; psychologists and pharmacists; from teachers and counselors; from places we have not yet begun to look. I think things like this have been going on for a long time, but I think we could do more to stop them.

And just like putting more CO2 into the air and being more efficient is good even if Al Gore is wrong, I think creating or a more compassionate society is good even if it doesn't prevent tragedies like this one.

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