It isn’t lost on me that my last post before taking a hiatus was a reflection on the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. In that post, I’d asked:
What will change now? With each attack, each swing of mass violence, we lose an element of ourselves. AMC theaters say they will ban dressing up in costumes and bringing in fake weapon props. Will we move next into metal detectors and bag searches? Conveyor belt checkpoints on every entrance? Guards on the exit doors? What will be too little or too much? Where does it end?
On December 14, 2012, we saw that it doesn’t end. That the evil violence can crawl into the safe haven of a K through four school and cut down all trapped in the path. We lost 20 children and six staff in Sandy Hook Elementary School and the killer’s mother in her home. No sooner did the CNN breaking news e-mails kick out that the media spin began with listings of inaccurate facts and invasive journalists feeding on every bit. Note to reporters: Interviewing children minutes after they’ve survived a shooting is never okay. Ditto for focusing cameras on the faces and intimate moments of family members learning devastating news.
Those of us outside of the events started sharing our thoughts and emotions via social media. We prayed, cried, liked inspirational pictures on Facebook and started weighing in on the issues of gun control and mental health care. The fact that the target this time was little kids had sealed in a new level of horror and helplessness.
All week, I’ve been yearning for a way to make it all matter. To feel like there are some concrete actions we can embrace to work towards change in the face of yet another tragedy. There are no absolute answers. Just us in this moment, engulfed by the sadness with a choice to act in a new way. We can act so this isn’t a movement that ends once the cameras fade. That is the change.
Resources for Change (thanks to Connie Schultz for sharing these)
Looking to reach out and touch your friendly Congress peeps? Check out the Online Congressional Directory.
We can provide ongoing support to the community of Newtown via local organizations and relief funds.
Support the first responders through their grief and healing process with cards and letters:
Sandy Hook Vol. Fire and Rescue
18-20 Riverside Rd/Po Box 783
Sandy Hook, CT 06482
Newtown Volunteer Ambulance Corps.
77 Main Street
P.O. Box 344
Newtown, Ct. 06470
Newtown Police Department
3 Main Street
Newtown, CT 06470
Newtown Public Schools/Superintendent’s office:
3 Primrose Street
Danbury Hospital Emergency Room Staff
24 Hospital Avenue
Danbury, CT 06810