This afternoon the “shooting insanity” that has been working it’s way across the US infected my home of Portland, Oregon. A masked gunman (which is sadly becoming a too familiar stereotype) ran through Clackamas Town Center, a mall on the outskirts of the city, spraying bullets at Christmas shoppers. Right now the best estimate is that two are dead and an unknown number injured. The shooter is also dead, with early reports speculating suicide.
There is little information now….about the shooter… about the victims… about what transpired. I have employees that live near the mall and I am sure shop there, so I am particularly concerned. These horrible events are even more horrible when they come home.
In any case, I am sure that within a few hours the news media will begin dissecting the event. There will be public outcry both for and against guns…psychological analysis of what drives someone to such dispicable actions, but for a lot of the victims it will just signal a Christmas that will haunt them for the rest of their lives. I am sure people could perhaps find some potential comfort if this could be a catalyst for our country to really try and prevent these kind of events in the future, but history unfortunately makes us pessimistic.
One thing that does occur to me….. what would happen if they didn’t identify the killer? What if the government and the press jointly decided that they would not honor these heinous events with any kind of recognition for the murderer? What if he was simply referred to as “The Clackamas Mad Man”; so perhaps other’s seeking their fifteen minutes of fame for such horrible actions would think twice?