Six are dead from the horrible events of January 8. Fourteen are injured. Gabrielle Giffords was only one of the people among this tragedy, yet it would seem she was the only one harmed by the inconceivable actions of Jared Lee Loughner. On the second Saturday of January, Giffords held an informal Congress on Your Corner meeting at the Safeway on Oracle and Ina.
It has been two weeks since the event that will make a mark in our history, and yet it seems as though we’ve already begun to forget all those who have been affected. Here at University High School we focus on alumnus Gabe Zimmerman and mourn his loss greatly. We identify with him and Gabrielle Giffords as we ready for the same mock elections they participated in, walk the same halls they once strolled, yet the other victims of the Congress on Your Corner shooting are pushed to the back of our minds. One life is not greater than another, so why would one death be more egregious? When Mr. Karlowicz and the seniors were planning what should be done to dedicate our coming mock elections to the victims of the shooting, we had to specify that Karlowicz include a sentence of giving our condolences to the other families affected. But aren’t the eighteen other lives endangered worth more than one sentence? I am not here to criticize University High School’s mourning of its graduates, I merely urge us all to think of the others injured and killed as a result of this heinous event.
The United States knows Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ every move. If one morning, the politician blinks twice in communication with doctors, the entire world rejoices at the miracle of a life and the miracle of Giffords being able to live one. The fact that the Congresswoman can function at all is a phenomenon unto itself. She was shot twice in the head; the gunman’s goal thwarted by a simple turn. Her recovery is a process projected to take years, and it is unclear whether she will ever be able to operate at her previous caliber. The functions of our brains are a temperamental thing, and her recovery has been amazing. But, six people died on January 8, 2011. Their names are John Roll, Christina-Taylor Green, Gabe Zimmerman, Phyllis Schneck, Dorwan Stoddard, and Dorothy Morris. I implore you to take time after you read this to think about their lives and the lives of their families. Say a prayer, shed a tear, but above all, remember them, and remember you are a Tucsonan—a title to be proud of.
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