When I first offered this, part of me wanted to believe we’d stop doing this to one another. I saw a graphic the other day on the number of Americans who have died in gun violence since the tragic murders at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on this date three years ago. The number was so large I think my brain refused to remember it.
That’s NOT the saddest part, as San Bernardino underscores. For me, it’s that we choose to mourn those whose lives are ended suddenly and senselessly instead of attempting to work to keep it from happening again or over and over again. With that as a wind at your back….
As an oldest child, I spend a lot of time fretting over what is and what could have been, often failing badly to see my role and responsibility in moving from the former to the latter.
Today is an anniversary of sorts for something so many of us couldn't grasp when it happened, and, I confess, I still didn't "get" any better than when we observed its first anniversary. Today I don't think we're any closer to understanding.
I'm not any smarter today than I was except to realize that I'm not any smarter. And I am also no closer to understanding now than I was then. All I can offer are words I offered, this time, last year and they remain as inadequate as they were in marking that gruesome anniversary at that time.
I cannot imagine how long this day is for a parent who suffered the loss of a child, a husband of a wife, a son or daughter of a parent, but I do know that today in Newtown, Connecticut, everyone trying to heal will hurt all over again.
Everywhere we turn today will be accounts recounting everything that everyone will ever know about an unthinkable tragedy that happened one year ago today but there is one thing we, with all of our research and analysis, will never know.
For a small town whose residents will always have broken hearts that can never heal, today is just the next day in a tragedy that will only end when all memory of what happened has gone. And that will never happen.
Even if you have a problem with God, or in my case S/He with me, perhaps a truce is in order so that you can remember the twenty-six angels who entered heaven this day three years ago.
- bill kenny