Too Soon to Talk – Responding to The Sandy Hook Tragedy

Words: Amy Myers

Online newspapers, print newspapers, Facebook, Twitter, every national media source shares the same headline of the most recent devastating shooting. Sandy Hook Elementary has broken the hearts of Americans shore to shore. And with sick stomachs and clenched fists, we cannot seem to escape the violence anywhere.

Already, national news stations question the possibility of harsher gun policies and how we should prevent these occurrences in the future. However, many viewers of the network may still be processing the tragedy, just as the families of lost lives are.

Without all the information available, and what is confirmed already broadcasted, we tend to jump to conclusions about the motive of the shooter, the laws that should be remade, and the changes in protection needed at schools nationally. While these topics are vital to the recovery of Sandy Hook and prevention of future tragedies, it may be too soon to conquer these tasks in regards to information and emotions.

“I don’t like that everything is being thrown out at once without a second thought. The media keeps changing the story this way and that because they don’t have the full story, and they are just saying what they first hear,” comments sophomore Alix Thielemann.

However, demonstrating the opposite behavior may not be the answer either. While revealing too much information may cause more damage than comfort, suppressing or ignoring the situation may be just as harmful. If we are completely blinded from the horrific incident, how can we help the ones involved?

Instead of either extreme, a middle ground needs to be provided. Skip all the gore and heart-wrenching details until we can recover from the most challenging information stated–the 20 children snatched from the world, and the six brave adults who stopped the number from climbing. As tempting as the latest details may be, theories and conclusions of evidence often change as time proceeds.

And maybe time is all we need. Time to process, to grieve, to recover, and to provide the shoulder needed for the families of Sandy Hook.

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