“Going through an experience like that you don’t just move on. It is very taxing. And while you are doing it you have to keep your emotions in check as a reporter, because you are there to do a job.”
That’s NPR correspondent Tom Goldman who covered the UCC Roseburg Shooting on October 1st. I had the opportunity to speak to Goldman and hear his experience
“There are moments when it has hit me, because it’s an enormous thing. My son asked me is there is a college I can go to and not get shot. It is becoming so prevalent in our society and you can’t guarantee anything.”
Events like these continue to happen, and each time we leave a situation like this we do nothing to combat it in the future. In fact on October 9th there was another campus shooting that took one life and injured three after two groups of students came into a dispute at Northern Arizona University. So how do we prevent this from happening?
“He has the power because he has the gun. And if you don’t have a gun, there is little to do.”
But that leads us to a sticky situation. The solution to this event is not that everyone should have a gun. What went wrong in this scenario is not that there were too few guns.
“It’s is common sense that we have to do something. He had fourteen guns. That’s not right. That has nothing to do with people who legally and smartly have a concealed weapon, or want to go hunting. It’s a huge gap between those two. But for some reason we can’t close that gap.”
Think about it this way. As Senator Elizabeth Warren stated, if there was an illness that was killing our children every single day there is no doubt we would do something about it. It would be a no brainer. But we can not seem to get any traction when it comes to gun deaths.
“I don’t know if this is going to lead to gun control. Gun laws are so hard to change in the country because of the National Rifle Association’s stronghold on the second amendment and lobbying. There is this notion that Congress doesn’t work.”
One thing that has been getting a lot of press lately is the figure that over the past decade there have been 24 terrorism related killings in our Nation. Over the same amount of time around 80024 people have died by guns. There is nothing in the history of this nation that has taken this many lives and has been treated with such nonchalance.
“We are supposed to be the leaders of the free world but we are so behind when it comes to this issue. Some would argue we are at a state of war with ourselves.”
The future of gun laws in this nation continues to look bleak, Goldman argues.
“With nothing it will become just the next thing. We can’t wait around for Congress to do something because Congress isn’t going to do anything. All of us will have to just be vigilant. Everyone has to play a role so we don’t get to the point where you are in the classroom.”
Even if we are incredibly vigilant citizens this will not solve the root of the problem. Goldman heard second hand from a student who had class with the UCC shooter a day before he killed nine people and the student said the shooter seemed completely normal. It is impossible to report everything we hear or see that we think ‘may be’ suspicious and even when we do most of the time we aren’t listening in the right places. Normal seeming people are capable of doing deads like these because they have the weaponry necessary to carry them out.
Until we solve the root of the issue that is the abundance and of automatic weapons in this nation, history will continue to repeat itself and those 80024 will have died in vain.
Because one of the motivations for the shooter was he wanted to be famous like the shooters in the past, I will not be addressing him by name.
However, I will be listing the names of those who died:
Quinn Glen Cooper 18
Lucas Eibel 18
Rebecca Carnes 18
Lucero Alcaraz 19
Treven Aspach 20
Jason Johnson 33
Sarena Moore 44
Kim Dietz 59
Lawrence Levine 67
Listen to Goldman’s NPR commentary: http://www.npr.org/people/2100552/tom-goldman
Watch a video put together by the Oregonion: http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2015/10/active_shooting_reported_at_um.html