Remembering Sandy Hook

Hemang Sharma

It has been almost two months since one of the most heart-breaking morning of my life. I had woken up lazily, late afternoon on Dec. 14, 2012 after finishing my semester early and checked CNN. What I saw that day made me sad, and for the first time a tear rolled down my eyes at seeing something in the news. As a media student, I check many news outlets before I start my day so I’m not surprised to see people dying from the night before or the morning of. But hearing the sheer terror that those little kids at Sandy Hook Elementary faced that day, and seeing those live images from Newtown, Conn. touched me in the worst way.

I don’t have kids. There are no younger siblings or kids in my neighborhood. I don’t know any people that have kids younger than college. But I like them. Their carefree innocence reminds me of the best time in my life, when I was just a kid, that how life is all about endless possibilities. But the kids they described in the news that day; their innocence was destroyed, their lives completely shattered, their friends and classmates gunned down like animals by an evil man who should have crashed his car before entering that elementary school.

We watched the families grieve on television, we watched the President Barack Obama’s emotional speech, we all thought of our loved ones. We all dealt with the tragedy as a nation; vigils, social media tributes, prayers, talking, looking for answer, and comforting our families. The death of 20 children and 6 adults who had done nothing wrong to anyone in their lives met death in the most ruthless way imaginable.

Like most mass-shootings in America, this one saw some class from media pundits, a trait usually absent in light of terrible tragedies because obviously political beliefs triumph decency.  “Guns don’t kill people, crazy people kill people” vs. “Guns are the problems, lets ban them all” arguments were still there, but the focus remained on the innocent lives that were lost.

A few weeks later, everything that was good about peoples’ behavior in the immediate aftermath of this terrible event has been overshadowed. The crazies have risen, and they have spoken. Their message: this country is intellectually perverse.

Some people used the family members, mostly fathers of dead children from Sandy Hook Elementary, and used them to peddle their agenda revolving around weapons. From screaming and heckling them on national TV as they are crying and wishing that a civilian hadn’t been present with an assault rifle near their kid to bugging them for a quote that establishes an anti-gun-restriction stand, the lowest form of humanity has approached this event.

And then we have the people that are still grossly misusing their first amendment right, the Sandy Hookers. These are the ‘unfazed by media lies’, ‘truth-seeking’, ‘independent’, ‘free-thinkers’ who claim that the Sandy Hook shooting was a pre-planned, orchestrated attack that the federal government and Obama staged to get more support for gun control measures. They argue that the parents interviewed on TV are actually ‘crisis-actors’ and not actual parents. Come to think of it, actual hookers have more class, and sensitivity than these people.

This pool of insensitive, deplorable-thinking human beings includes a tenured professors from a notable Florida college, and almost everyone on Alex Jones’ InfoWars website, a widely-known hangout of other conspiracy theorists such as the NWO world-government revolters, the 9/11 truthers, the Obama-birthers, the Obama churchers (people who don’t believe he is a Christian). CNN’s Anderson Cooper has refuted almost all the claims these loons have perpetuated, and so have records from law enforcement agencies.

“Dear Jack, you are my best friend. We had fun together. I will miss you. I will talk to you in my prayers. I love you Jack. Love, John.” John’s best friend Jack was one of the 20 kids that got killed. Does the text of this letter seem fake to anyone?

No one can change what happened at Sandy Hook on Dec. 14, 2012. Those kids and adults that died that day for no reason deserve our respect. Most of all, they deserve the decency to be dignified. And so do their families, in dealing with a loss that is bound to puncture their hearts every time they pass by that school, every year they remember their child on his/her birthday, when they see his/her friends graduate from school, be home for the summer from college, and live long, fulfilling lives. We should provide these people with the gift of privacy and decency. Those exploiting the Sandy Hook shooting for any political reasons should be ashamed of themselves.

Spouting conspiracy theories, screaming gun ownership measures in their faces is the last thing a grieving parent needs.

 

Hemang Sharma

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