This weekend will mark a year gone by from Sandy Hook. That grim morning. All those innocents. Here in Holliston there’s to be a memorial gathering on the Town Common on the evening of the 14th. Talk to the people putting it together—the Democratic Town Committee— and the promise is it won’t be a political gathering. Each of the names is to be read. Perhaps music. Definitely candles.
I’m glad this event is happening. I hope they manage the right spirit of “thoughtful remembrance” they’ve stated as their goal —I remember how shattering the news was a year ago. I can still see the faces of so many children. I remember a sweet faced boy named Noah who made me weep —the way I recognized my own son —something of my self —in him. This stuff cuts through nerve to the bone.
The promise I’ve heard is that this event on Saturday will be brief and respectful —it won’t be political. And I remember being glad when I heard that. Insisting to myself that anything that was political would insult the memory of those children, the brave teachers who died with them protecting them. As I think of it this morning though I wonder if the real insult —to all of us— is that our politics are so readily assumed to be ugly —our civics unworthy.
The efforts to respond to Sandy Hook with responsive responsible laws have come to naught. No limit on magazine size or the killing speed and function of commercially sold assault weapons, no improvement in background checks. Culturally we still revel in the spectacle of weaponized violence in our movies and xbox games.
More violence and death has followed in the year that followed Sandy Hook. I’m sure the numbers far outweigh the toll from that December morning a year back. Maybe somebody inclined to make a statistical argument can cite the figures.