Virginia Tech Murders
I don't have much to add to this story. It's a tragedy, pure and simple. Yes, it's possible that it could have been averted, but that's a hindsight judgment that does nothing to change what did happen. Salon.com has a couple articles on the incident that I found interesting.
The first is an argument for repealing the Second Amendment. It's not a bad argument, truth be told, though I will admit to being a bit ambivalent about the idea of messing around with the Constitution. I will also admit to being a gun owner, albeit an antique derringer pistol that belonged to my great-grandfather and that I have no intention of ever firing (I don't even know if ammunition could be found for it, though I assume it could with at least some effort). I think it's a safe assumption, though, that there's no way that the Framers foresaw the day when a lone student could walk into a school building with more firepower than an entire regiment of the Continental Army and wreak such destruction in the space of a few minutes.
The second article is actually a collection of pieces from press in other countries, which I think is often helpful to read. Now if only the policymakers would actually read it.
Yesterday, car bombs in Baghdad killed over 180 people, most of whom were doubtlessly trying to go about the business of their day much as the students of Virginia Tech were. And yet even though those apparently coordinated attacks killed over five times as many people and are part of a war that has now claimed over 3300 American lives and the lives of probably hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, it didn't merit as much attention because we've become numb to the level of that particular horror. And, of course, it happened "over there", which makes it less real to most of us, I think.
It gives one pause.