Thursday Jan. 16, 2014
I feel numb.I feel cold.I feel like a statistic.I can't sleep.Granted, my sentiments are nothing compared to what the families of the two dead women must be thinking. I feel horrible for them, wish there were something to do. I can only say I'm so sorry.
But I also have this sense, as a member of the Elkhart community, that this placed has now been shoved, unexpectedly, unwillingly, into a dark place, some sort of abyss.
Loss of innocence sounds so cliche... Still...
Now Elkhart will go through what so many U.S. communities, seemingly, have to -- the attention that follows when someone, some guy at a Martin's supermarket in Elkhart in this case, kills, seemingly at random, with a gun.
Here's how Reuters, the U.K.-based international news agency, put it:
"A gunman opened fire inside an Indiana supermarket on Wednesday evening, killing two women - a shopper and an employee - before being shot dead in a shootout with police, authorities said."Indiana State Police said the shooting happened at around 10 p.m. local time at an open but sparsely populated Martin's Super Market in Elkhart, a city of some 50,000 residents about 140 miles north of Indianapolis in the U.S. state."
Now, to the outside world, we're "a city of some 50,000 residents about 140 miles north of Indianapolis" where a deadly shooting occurred. The Reuters article went on to reference a shooting Tuesday by a New Mexico 12-year-old and others "that have ignited a fierce national debate on gun control."
Details of the incident have yet to be revealed. But now that debate seemingly comes to Elkhart, now it's Elkhart's turn to bask in the unwanted spotlight. Now come the stories about the victims, the gunman, the back and forth. There will be a chorus, perhaps: It's time to grieve. Then: We need more gun controls. Then: No, guns don't kill people, people do.
Again, condolences to the victims, who have to remain foremost.
Tim Vandenack is a reporter at the Elkhart Truth newspaper in Elkhart, Ind., www.etruth.com. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 574-296-5884. Visit him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter at @timvandenack.