Take note of how the mass killings at Virginia Tech have made you feel – upset, frightened, confused, angry, empty, whatever. It seems to have left the entire nation stunned and, at least for a brief moment before the NRA springs into action, reflective. I share all of those sentiments in response to this senseless and horrific act of violence.

Now take the way that you feel and try to imagine having three or four of these incidents every single day for three years. I suspect you can't imagine that. It wouldn't be hard if you lived in Baghdad, though. You wouldn't have to "imagine" anything. Between 50 and 200 civilians dead at the hands of suicide bombers and execution squads is an average day in Iraq.

Just keep that in mind as you realize how awful these 33 needless deaths make you feel.

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  1. Peggy Says:

    I can't really think of a very good comment, because this post did make me think about it, and now my brain hurts.

    Good post, Ed. I enjoy reading your work more than I can clearly convey. Also, I am going to be hitting "empathy" extra hard with my students over the next quarter, as a general concept, and this is why.