When I saw the headlines, I felt nauseous. Words escape me to even convey the sadness that the people of Newtown, Connecticut – particularly those affected by the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary – must be feeling right now. Normally this blog is about beauty and light, joyful things, but my heart isn’t there right now. I can’t stop thinking about the parents, the families, and the children lost so senselessly.
Normally in the wake of a tragedy there are fundraisers and ways that everyone can tangibly help through donations. In the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy, I’m honestly at a loss for how we can help in a real, meaningful way. How do you begin to heal these wounds? How do you come to terms with this as a community?
I can’t claim to know all the answers, and this is much more complex of an issue than I’m prepared to weigh in on. I am in favor of gun control and improved mental healthcare in this country and around the world. I found myself nodding and applauding and saying words of agreement out loud during President Obama’s speech this week. And when he read the names of the children, I could not help but cry.
Click here to read a transcript and click here to watch if you haven’t yet.
“We can’t tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end. And to end them, we must change. We will be told that the causes of such violence are complex, and that is true. No single law — no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world, or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society.
But that can’t be an excuse for inaction. Surely, we can do better than this. If there is even one step we can take to save another child, or another parent, or another town, from the grief that has visited Tucson, and Aurora, and Oak Creek, and Newtown, and communities from Columbine to Blacksburg before that — then surely we have an obligation to try.
In the coming weeks, I will use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens — from law enforcement to mental health professionals to parents and educators — in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this. Because what choice do we have? We can’t accept events like this as routine. Are we really prepared to say that we’re powerless in the face of such carnage, that the politics are too hard? Are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom?” – President Barack Obama
My heart goes out to the families affected in Newtown, Connecticut. I hope and pray that real change comes about in the wake of this horrific loss.
If anyone knows of a way to really help the community of Newtown, please let me know in the comments below. Or just share your thoughts. I’m heartbroken over this story.