Thursday, September 3, 2015

...and the violence continues. It seems that is how I want to end so many of my stories, Facebook and Twitter postings and conversations. Last Wednesday, I awoke to the heartbreaking news that two journalists were murdered during a live shoot in Virginia by a former coworker, who was apparently known for violent tendencies and unsteadiness.

As I watched the news that night, thinking my son wasn’t within earshot, I cried. I was overcome with so much emotion that I sat there and let the tears fall: tears for those who lost their lives; tears for their families and loved ones whom were being interviewed; tears for their coworkers who, despite everything, continued with their jobs. All of this just seemed too close to home.

During my career as a journalist, there have been a few times where I felt threatened, or uneasy. Typically, I have been unsettled over phone conversations that leave me on edge for a few days. Once that feeling subsides, I glide right back into my routine. But, last Wednesday shook that routine up and made me really question my own actions and what I’m doing to prevent something like this happening to me.

Because, it could happen to me. I’m not ignorant enough to have the “never me” mentality. I’ve known enough “crazy” people to know better than that. But, I do have a comfort zone that I’m used to being in and I could always be more aware of my surroundings.

As I was crying in front of the television, Michael walked in the room. He asked, “Mom, did you know those reporters?”

“No buddy, I didn’t know them,” I answered.

“But they’re reporters like you. I don’t understand how something like this could happen. Or why people keep killing each other. It makes no sense,” he said.

My nine-year-old can’t comprehend it, and neither can I. I’ve always been of the belief that crazy people will do crazy things, despite what we may do to try and prevent things from happening. Unfortunatley, I don’t have any answers for my son. It seems to be a question that comes up whenever our country faces tragedy at the hands of monsters: what can be done to keep guns out of the posession of criminals or the mentally unstable?

Until we can figure that out, I think we’ll continue hearing about these types of senseless murders. I’m a supporter of the freedoms of our country, but I’m not fan of those freedoms being abused.

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