Today, tragedy happened. Though the details are still hazy, there is one thing we do know: Today lives were changed. Today lives were broken.
This morning, when we were running off to work, thanking God it was Friday, or still under the safety of our own covers; someone else was fighting to be in control, was fighting to feel important, and alive and ok.
I know people will be uncomfortable by my expression of sympathy for the shooter. Though it is not greater than my sympathy for the victims and their families, I do feel for him, when I think of this terrible event. Sure, we can call him the “bad guy” and in some people’s story he will alway be that, but one does not simply wake up one day, at 24yrs old, and decide to violently end lives. I doubt honestly, during high school, when they asked about his future plans that he thought of today… that he pictured himself, gun in hand, taking lives.
He’s been fighting for significance long before today.
In fact, I would go so far as to say, he had an idea of what he hoped he’d be but somewhere in the push and pull of change he lost that idea and started to believe that he was not only bad, but incapable of good. And that is a tragedy.
To the victims, I want to say I’m sorry but that seems cheap and loose and undefined. So I’ll say I’m filled with compassion for you and I hope that your life is not defined by this moment though its alteration is inevitable. I’ll tell you that wounds heal if you let them, that scars remind you of where you’ve been but don’t determine who you are. I’ll tell you that there is hope, and I… am sorry.
From Friday July 20th, 2012.