A Response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting

I have remained quiet, until now, about the recent Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

I have seen all the thoughtful posts friends have made to Facebook and Twitter. Not to take away from the heartfelt nature of the posts, but they all started to sound the same, and I wasn't sure a what I could add. And I wasn't sure what I wanted to say that matched what I was feeling.

And I have seen all the sound bites and stories suggesting this happened because there wasn't enough God in schools, or men in schools, or guns and shootists in schools, but I wasn't sure what I could say about those other than to slowly shake my head and say, “You. Have. Got. To. Be. Kidding…”

But a friend at work was really upset about the shooting, even last Friday when we joined with others across the county in a moment of silence, a week after the tragedy, and I realized that there were two things that did comfort me; made me feel better. I shared those two things with my friend and now I share them here.

The first was a Fred Rogers quote which I saw all over social media last week:

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of ‘disaster,’ I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”

The other was a parent's response to the idea that this happened because there isn't enough God in school. What it really is is a wonderful testimony to the great work teachers do, way beyond making sure children learn the 3 Rs.

These made me feel a little better. Maybe they will you, too.