Thursday, April 26, 2007


"In violence, we forget who we are."
-----Mary McCarthy

I've had a number of people bring up the Virginia Tech tragedy in the past week. They want to know what my perspective is ... what I think could make someone "just snap like that." My take on it? No one "just snapped". The killer methodically planned out what he wanted to do and he did it. What motivated him to do that, we may never know. And the reality is that there are many, many people who walk the planet who would do the exact same thing. Not all of us are given a moral compass as we grow up. And some of us have faulty mental wiring, making it difficult to stifle impulses. The net result is that we have people among us who are willing to (and, in fact, interested in) doing things that many of us would consider horrific. And that if we manage to catch these people before they commit a heinous act, we should count ourselves lucky. I find it fascinating that people seem to want to polarize things so the "scary-bad-mean-awful" people are on one side and the rest of us are on the other. It's as if we will do fine if we can cage them all up and feel safe and secure. The reality is that the world is not a secure place. But we also cannot live in fear and terror, hiding at home, worrying that something might happy. We have to learn from what has happened, figure out if there was some way it might've been handled with fewer losses, fewer scars, and fewer heartbreaks. But to think that we'll ever reach a point where we'll be able to predict this kind of thing 100%, that is naivety in action.


Mel said...

Last week our little, consolidated school had a drill.
They've added it to the host of fire drills and tornado drills and bomb threat drills.

This one had the students running zig zag down the hallways in case of an armed assault.

Can I admit it made me tearful?

crazierinreallife said...

great insight susanne

Dawn Lindstrom said...

wonderful thought Susanne. I think what upsets me the most is how the media and people in general cast alot of blame on the school's administration. They were doing what they thought was best at the time.

DH does have drills at school for this time of thing, but when it is real people just freeze. You hope and pray that everyone does the right thing.

I just hope that the families and students find the strength, love and support to get through this very horrific event.