Editorial: We’ve become too desensitized

In light of yet another school shooting in the United States, it seems society is becoming far too used to such tragedy.

I remember how terrified and sad I felt in 1999 when two shooters opened fire at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, killing 12 students and one teacher before taking their own lives.

The shooting became even more publicized with the release of Michael Moore’s documentary, Bowling for Columbine which discussed gun control (or the lack there of) in the United States.

Here we are 16 years later, and the most recent shooting on Oct. 1 at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon has become all but a bullet point on the nightly news.

In fact, it wasn’t until President Obama’s speech hours after the shooting that killed nine people (not including the shooter, who took his own life) and injured another nine that finally spiked an interest on social media and became a trending item, albeit briefly.

A co-worker saw what was happening on CNN and ran to my desk and showed me the shooting that had taken place. I immediate took to Facebook to see what else was being said about the tragedy. To my surprise, none of my 1,200 plus Facebook friends posted anything on their walls about the shooting.

I immediately starting thinking people are just really apathetic these days and don’t care about anything that doesn’t directly affect their own lives. But the more I thought about it, the more I started to think it’s not that they don’t care, it’s that we’ve become so desensitized as a society that a mass shooting in the states is becoming the norm.

There have been dozens of shootings since Columbine, and little has been done to change the country’s gun laws.

Following the horrific Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in December 2012 when a 20-year-old man fatally shot 20 children and six adults (then killed himself), President Obama try to introduce gun control legislation, which failed to pass through congress.

Following the Oregon shooting, the president spoke to the nation.

“There’s been another mass shooting in America,” he said. “As I said just a few months ago and a few months before that and I said each time we see one of these mass shootings, our thoughts and prayers aren’t enough.”

The United States is the only advanced country on earth that sees mass shootings every few months, which has become routine, he said.

“We’ve become numb to this.”

While gun supporters may disagree with Obama on legislation, they can’t disagree with him on the fact that we have become numb to such tragedies.

 

Just Posted

Teck announces roll out of electric buses for Elk Valley operations

Hon. Michelle Mungall says it’s great to see Teck taking action on climate change

Morrison wins Kootenay-Columbia for Conservative Party

Unofficial results peg 28,495 votes for Morrison with 98 per cent of polls reporting Monday evening

UPDATE: Morrison wins Kootenay-Columbia by more than 7,000 votes

Elections Canada is reporting a 72% voter turnout

Trudeau has won the most seats — but not a majority. What happens next?

Trudeau will have to deal with some of the implications of Monday’s result

LIVE MAP: Results in Canada’s 2019 federal election

Polls are now closed across the country

Scheer says Canada more divided than ever, as NDP and Bloc hold cards close

While Liberals were shut out of two key prairie provinces, they took two-thirds of the seats in Ontario

Horvat’s hat trick lifts Canucks to 5-2 win over Red Wings

First career three-goal game for Vancouver captain

Saanich Gulf-Islands’s Elizabeth May coy about leadership plans

The federal Green party leader talks possibility of running as MP without being leader

Estheticians can’t be forced to wax male genitals, B.C. tribunal rules

Langley transgender woman Jessica Yaniv was ordered to pay three salon owners $2,000 each

Two youth arrested in UBC carjacking at gunpoint, after being spotted in stolen Kia

‘A great deal of credit is due the alert person who called us,’ said North Vancouver Sgt. Peter DeVries

People’s Party of Canada’s anti-immigration views ‘didn’t resonate’ with voters: prof

Party was formed on anti-immigration, climate denying views in 2018

Windstorm knocks out power for 10,000 in north and central B.C.

Power slowly being restored, BC Hydro says

Investor alert: ‘Split games’ pyramid scheme circulating in B.C.

British Columbia Securities Commission issues warning about scheme selling virtual shares

Federal NDP may support B.C. with major projects, Carole James says

SkyTrain Surrey extension, Massey Tunnel need Ottawa’s help

Most Read