To the editor:
As an angry citizen of this country and a member of this community, I could not contain my urge to submit an opinion piece to you on the recent events that transpired at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut.
I'm sure you will probably be swarmed with an astronomical number of submissions to the Open Line, but I can assure you that nothing will compare to what you are about to read. I am not sure how far censorship extends in the media to keep such material out of public view, but as a practitioner of the freedoms granted to me by my country, I believe that if freedom means anything it would be the right to tell the people what they are not prepared to hear.
That being said, the following opinion piece is solely the opinion of myself and I do not authorize any reproduction of what is said below unless it is done so in whole.
This whole elementary school massacre in Connecticut is the epitome of the metaphorical Greek tragedy. It's disgusting, it's sad, and probably the most painful experience anyone would ever have to go through in their lives. I put myself in the shoes of those grieving parents and all I have to say is this:
People are angry and are demanding answers. The families of those involved have a right to. Those people sitting at home, saying how sorry they are, telling themselves they'd never let something like that happen to their kids... These are the same people who send their kids to school the very next day.
Why even bother mentioning the incident and offering solutions to anyone who will listen if you don't do anything about it? If people really want something done - some actual change - they should have kept their kids home from school indefinitely. People should have been outside school property protesting poor spending and education budget cuts. The people should have pressured those in power to actually do something about it. Instead, the whole incident will turn out just like Columbine and every other shooting/massacre in the not-too-distant past - a nation of angry and grieving people, a controversy over the Second Amendment, some token resources to create that false sense of security once more, and nothing more than a footnote in history to be referred to when convenient.
Time to wake up, people. We're the ones who run the country - our communities - and if you want something to change, change needs to start there. You ask yourselves what kind of a monster could do something like this to innocent people, let alone children? Uncle Sam is the biggest monster in U.S. history. He's been shaking down his people every chance he gets and killing them directly and indirectly with his poor leadership and poor decision making. If my daughter were old enough to be in school, you can be sure she wouldn't step foot on school property again until there were automatic locks and metal detectors on all major entrances/exits of the schools, security cameras and alarms at each of these locations, and an active law enforcement officer watching those cameras/patrolling the grounds.
It may sound a bit drastic and expensive, but consider how much money was wasted in the past and how much money education programs have lost yet still retain the ability to offer quality education. You know, there's a rule of thumb in the IT field when it comes to security: The cost of security should be scaled to the value of the assets you're trying to protect, meaning don't use padlocks to guard bank vaults or retinal scanners to protect patient files. Keeping that in mind, ask yourself what value your school district - your local, state, and federal government - puts on the lives of your children. Then you will see why I am as angry as I am right now at this lack of motivation to protect our children's - our country's - future.
Michael W. Snook Jr.