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ISSUE 120 VOL 19 PUBLISHED 4/27/2007

Reactions to shootings

By Ginna Baker
Contributing Writers


Friday, April 27, 2007

Last Wednesday, I walked past the newsstand in Rolvaag and saw an angry face staring up at me, brandishing two handguns. As I brought the paper closer to my face, his sneer paralyzed me. A person like Cho Seung-Hui could do anything he wanted, I thought, take our lives at the twitch of a finger. Most good people aren’t waiting to pull out their semi-automatics and shoot back. The shootings at Virginia Tech last week hit me in a personal way. Many of my high school friends attend the school, and many of my family members went to Virginia Tech. My brother was an R.A. in the dorm where the first shooting happened. My cousin lives there now, one floor above the violence. She lost a friend last Monday. I felt so angry to think of the amount of fear and sadness one young man inflicted on so many of my loved ones.

As I brooded over this seeming injustice, I wondered what went through this boy’s mind as he became more and more violent. Some write him off, citing mental illness. But even people who are mentally ill make choices. It is clear that Cho was in a lot of pain, stuck inside a nightmare-filled mind. He, who compared himself to Jesus Christ, left this life troubled and filled with rage. In the end, a person like Cho seems more pitiful than fearsome. Think about it – how pathetic would a person have to be to spend hours videotaping himself? The victims of the shooting left this life with memories of happy summer days and the love of friends and family; Cho left a life of pain and emptiness.

So as we pray together for the Virginia Tech 32, let us not forget to pray for a hurting young man who made some screwed-up choices – as we all do from time to time.

Staff Writer Ginna Baker is a senior from Harrisonburg, Va. She majors in English and in history.





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