Shooting in Newtown

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Abbygail Reid, Student Life Editor

A community once described as heaven on earth was stripped of its innocence Friday, December 14. Dressed in black fatigues and a military vest, a heavily armed man walked into a Connecticut elementary school Friday and opened fire.

Around 9 am at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the students had just finished reciting the Pledge of Allegiance when the staff reported hearing “popping noises.” Evil visited that school and left in its tracks 20 children and 6 faculty members dead.

The shooter attacked two first grade classes and killed 20 children, shooting them all numerous times with a .223 caliber assault rifle. These children were all between the ages of 6 and 7. These are 20 lives cut short, 20 beautiful smiles gone and 20 dreams down the drain.  Six adult women, including the principal, the school psychologist, and teachers, were also tragically killed.

Then the question arises: what was his motive behind this? Right before the shooting the suspect, Adam Lanza, 20 yrs old, also shot his mother in the face. The investigation to find the motivation is trying to rationalize an irrational man. There were reports that said Lanza had a personality disorder. Others blame it on the violent video games that Lanza always played on the computer.

Then comes the issue of gun control. Adam Lanza obtained the 3 guns that he used from his mother, which ended up being used against her. Is it only in the case of innocent children dying that we should consider gun laws? The incident has thrust the idea of having stricter gun control laws to the attention of the American public. However, many governmental officials fear that passing a law for stricter gun control would violate the constitutional right of the Freedom to Bear Arms and anger the NRA (National Rifle Association). On the other hand, they also know that they may risk their chances of re-election unless they make the American public happy.

An apparent Morgan Freeman statement, which went viral, said, “It’s because of the way the media reports it…Turn on the news and see how we treat the Batman theater shooter and the Oregon mall shooter like celebrities. Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris are household names, but do you know the name of a single ‘victim’ of Columbine?” Although this statement later on was said to be a hoax, it does bring an important issue to mind. The fact of the matter is that the media will do all it takes to get viewers. They pinpoint the issues that interest the public, which in most cases, are the suspects and not the victims. Are the sick crimes like these a way for the murderers to go out with a bang knowing that their identity will be etched in the public’s consciousness?  For a mentally unstable person, it may be a way to be the center of attention because his or her faces will be plastered on every news channel and newspaper. I think it is time to concentrate on the victims and their families.

The names of the victims are as followed: Charlotte Bacon 6, Daniel Barden 7, Olivia Engel 6, Madeleine Hsu 6, Catherine Hubbard 6, Chase Kowalski 7, Jesse Lewis 6, Ana Marquez-Greene 6, James Mattioli 6, Grace Audrey McDonnell 7, Emilie Parker 6, Jack Pinto 6, Noah Pozner 6, Jessica Rekos 6, Benjamin Wheeler 6, Rachel D’Avino 29, Dawn Hochsprung 47, Nancy Lanza 52, Anne Marie Murphy 52, Lauren Gabrielle Rousseau 30 and Victoria Soto.

There are a lot of different measures that can be taken to prevent such a horrific tragedy from happening again, but it is up to the cooperation of Americans and governmental officials to make that happen.