I haven't said anything about the massacre at Virginia Tech, because I didn't know what to say. I really didn't... But now I've discovered that Leroy Sievers over at NPR's MyCancer blog has already said it so well:
"I read today that 30,000 people die in gun violence every year, and yet, we don't talk about it much... The toll from gun violence is horrendous. The toll on our highways is even higher. And the toll from cancer and other diseases, higher still. The fact that cancer deaths occur one by one is obvious, but the total is staggering. We have to do more."
Sievers goes on to say that in the past, in his capacity as a journalist, he regularly brushed aside "misdemeanor homicide" -- one-off killings of some small-time criminal or drug dealer -- as a pretty much "meaningless death." Today, he's ashamed of that view.
Searching for inspirational quotes on diabetes and death on the web today, what I actually found was this: "Diabetes kills people. Sometimes slowly, sometimes suddenly. Sometimes it's not the primary cause of death ... but there are few diseases more serious, and increasingly, there are few more common."
Diabetes now kills over 3.5 million people every year. These deaths are far from meaningless, but I have to assume they are largely unavoidable. The 32 people gunned down at Virginia Tech, however, were victims of random anger -- such a meaningless reason to die! I fear for my own children. Where will they ever be safe?
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