I felt that I needed to post something about the horrible events yesterday (14th December) in Newport, Connecticut. I am aware that this post will be one of so very many others reflecting on the shootings of children and adults at an Elementary School.
I first heard about it on Twitter and then, like so many in our increasingly very small global village, I followed developments through the Twitter stream and on my Timeline on Facebook.
Being an ex-teacher I have many contacts with teachers of whom the vast majority are in the U.S.A. Many of these people are my friends on Facebook and therefore I followed this tragedy about a school by reading the instant reactions of people, like myself, who have spent their working life inside of a school and whose main motivation in life has always been to give the children in their charge the best education that they could.
There were almost instant discussions about absence of gun control, of the pain that they felt for the parents and their colleagues at the school. There was a feeling that all the usual moans about the iniquities of the current obsession with testing should be halted as this was a time for reflection, for prayer (for those who believe), for asking questions about the safety of the children in all schools everywhere and how difficult this is in reality as one cannot organise for a raging madman with three guns who attacks indiscriminately and with no warning!
There was hurt in our global village and the shooting that happened so many miles away at the other side of an Ocean (for me) felt as if it had happened just around the corner. It just showed me, as if I didn’t already know, that we now do inhabit a very large village in a threatened world. Any event that happens in one part of the village, like shootings in a square in Cairo, or the rescue of miners from deep down a mine shaft in Chile feel very real to us and we feel intently the suffering, the hope, the joy and the despair.
I have cried, like so many others in our village, for the lost lives of those children yesterday who happened to be in the wrong place when a gunman appeared. Our village is hurting, there will be no real words of solace to those who have lost their loved ones but at least they know we are here.