I was going to try and find a nice way of putting this, but I’ve got nothing. People the world over need to stop being ignorant of all the death that occurs every single day. I’m certainly not without sentiment for the events that took place in Newtown, CT this past week, but I will however say that I don’t feel as disgusted as many people do. Now before you start thinking I’m some kind of unfeeling, rude fellow that has no heart, bear with me as I explain some of why I feel that way.
A co-worker of mine commented that, “school’s, like, the safest place for them, you wouldn’t expect this.” The fact is this sort of thing happens all the time. Though not all of these are recent and the list is far from complete here are a few examples:
On 12 April 1993 the Bosnian Serbs told the UNHCR representatives that they would attack the town of Srebrenica within two days unless the Bosniaks surrendered and they did. The same day, Serbs attacked Srebrenica’s elementary school, killing 62 Bosniak children and wounding 152 others.
The Dunblane school massacre occurred at Dunblane Primary School in the Scottish town of Dunblane on 13 March 1996. The gunman, 43-year-old Thomas Hamilton (b. 10 May 1952), entered the school armed with four handguns, shooting and killing sixteen children and one adult before committing suicide. Along with the 1987 Hungerford massacre and the 2010 Cumbria shootings, it remains one of the worst criminal acts involving firearms in the history of the United Kingdom.
On September 1, 2004, The North Caucasus town of Beslan became know to the world for a tragic reason. A terrorist group took hostage 1,128 people who gathered at a local school on that day; two days later, 319 hostages including 187 children were killed in the storming of the building. Hundreds of schoolchildren and their relatives were injured.
AS A WAVE of revulsion sweeps the world after a regime massacre in Syria – 32 children, some with what appear to be bullet holes in their temples, are among more than 90 dead – Washington is manoeuvring to win Moscow’s support for a plan to dislodge the embattled Syrian leader, Bashar al-Assad.
As many as 300 others were wounded in the bloodletting when regime forces backed by local volunteers attacked Houla, a rebel-held Sunni village near the troubled city of Homs.
There of course are many other stories to be told, some of them well known (Columbine High School massacre, Timothy McVeigh’s bombing of a building that housed a day-care center, the shooting at an Amish school, Virginia Tech) and at least one story hardly mentioned is the fact that the same day as the shooting in Connecticut there was a man in China that went around stabbing children.
The main thing that drives me nuts about these incidents is not just the reaction to each individual event as being some new heinous act that we’ve never seen before, but the fact that people immediately jump to screaming about gun laws and how having guns on the street kills people, yet every day over 3000 babies are thrown away in pieces without it making headline news. As a friend of ours commented through a rather tongue-in-cheek graphic on the book of faces, (paraphrased) “Would you be more upset if they were aborted with a gun?”
I’m not going to go any further with this particular rant because I will begin to repeat myself constantly, and there are also so many other cases of children dying and/or being murdered every day that I couldn’t begin to give links to all the reports. Simply put, while the events of this past week were heinous and disgusting, these are not the first little-ones to be murdered in such a cruel way and the American public needs to look outside of their little bubbles and see how gross humanity has become.
Dear Father, I’m sorry that so many of us can get distracted by our little lives and ignore atrocities that take place outside of our spheres. I ask that your spirit come down on all the world so we can remain mindful of your call to care for all. Be with the parents and families and friends of all the people murdered everywhere, and may we always be willing to forgive those who have committed these horrible acts. I pray these things to you through your son who came to give us the ability to talk to you like this. Amen.