18 April, 2007

You turn every head, but you don't see Me.

My heart goes out to anyone who lost someone at the Virginia Tech massacre.

There are thousands of questions running through my head - why didn't the authorities do anything after the first shots? Didn't anyone see the madman walking for almost a kilometer to Norris Hall? Didn't anyone spot the chained doors of Norris Hall? What was going through his head? If they knew the murderer had shown signs of being disturbed, why wasn't he counseled?


When I heard the news it was 6.30am. I was pretty much struck senseless. All I could think about was if my friend there was alive. I've never in my life had to wonder if a dear one was still alive. It's probably the worst feeling in the world.
Words can't really describe the relief that flooded me when he answered the phone.

It's sad that it takes a tragedy of such a monumental proportion to force us to look at people in a brand new light. A tainted light.
The people of my generation have witnessed The Columbine High School shootings, September 11th, The Bali Bombings, The war in Iraq (amongst many others) and now this.

We're missing something. Something is not going right.

But at the end of the day, I'm just heartbroken at the senselessness of it all.

A parent should never have to bury their child.

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Blogger Rohit did the happy dance and finally said..

Well, you could also take it this way- the hundreds of wars in Europe, the bloodshed in other continents, the two world wars, the cold war- man has always been barbaric. But it is only because of the intense media coverage and powerful telecom that we feel more of the impact than before.

11:18 PM  
Blogger winger did the happy dance and finally said..

it is what the wise call Life... or rather a part of it most of choose not to look at... but even if you dont, it does jump up and stands in front of you every now and then, sadly not much can be done about it.. those who can, arent there and those who are there, dont..

9:09 AM  
Blogger Silvara did the happy dance and finally said..

I agree - each generation has its own horror to deal with and this has been ours. It's heartbreaking to see the footage and not feel for those who were there.

I wish it would stop :(

12:41 PM  
Blogger Mahima did the happy dance and finally said..

rohit - correct..but as for now the purpose of my post isnt really to debate media coverage and all..im just really sad..

winger - so true..life sometimes has a way of grabbing u by the collar and shaking you really hard.

silvara - i wish so too..i have a nasty feeling however, that this is just going to spawn a lot of copycat murdering sprees. i really hope im wrong.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous MinKARA did the happy dance and finally said..

i know maHi Baby..its all the GUN LAW problem..i mean if lives are taken due to a natural cause such as tsunamis and earth quake then fair enough..BUt if it is due to DUMb unreasonable and absolutely SENSELESS LAWS THEN its freaKing UnjUstIfied especially to the family Of the ViCtims!

I just hope and pray that this incident will knock some sense into the american Government..god knows how many more lives are taken day in and day out by people who possess GUNS in america..we only happen to hear the ones that are hyped up by the media..All i knoe is that America is supposed to supposed to symbolise freedom and democracy and This is definitely NOT MY IDEA OF LIBERTY!

9:30 AM  
Blogger Nath did the happy dance and finally said..

My sympathies to the victims' families too, and it's good that your friend is OK. However, to keep this in perspective, remember that approximately 150,000 other people died that day. All those tragedies you listed, put together, have a far smaller death toll than heart disease, infection, cancer, and so on do in a single year. (More here.) Yes, this is all unfortunate, but this is not something new. This is the status quo for human beings. In fact, this generation probably has had it unusually light so far. Frankly, I was pleasantly surprised that less than 6% of deaths are deliberate -- including suicides.

As for the questions -- while I am curious about them myself, from what I know so far I don't think anybody has really done anything wrong. The authorities treated the first shots like a regular homicide -- as, I think, they should have. Gunshots are not rare, even on a University campus. About a week ago, there were shots fired less than a mile from the building I study in. Should the university have been evacuated? I don't think so. Such incidents are (unfortunately) quite routine. I don't think it is wise to overreact.

As for why nobody spotted him -- I doubt he was waving the guns around. I don't even know if there were any witnesses. He could have just pocketed the weapons and walked away. Last I read, they still didn't know for sure whether he was responsible.

And finally, the counseling. I think warning signs are only clear in retrospect. How can you tell a potential Cho Seiung-Hui from someone who's just depressed, or disappointed with his fellow human beings? We don't have the resources to counsel every single person who seems misanthropic.

(Pardon the long rant -- I have been thinking about this for a while.)

1:04 PM  

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