TRAGEDY STRIKES LAS VEGAS - CAN WE DO ANYTHING TO END THE MADNESS?

POSTED OCTOBER 4TH, 2017 | BY DEIDRE CURIEL

I am sure we are all really tired of having to say ‘my heart is heavy for those that have lost their lives in this unjustifiable tragedy.’ Not even a year and a half ago, we buried 49 innocent people in Orlando in regards to the shooting at Pulse nightclub, In May 2017 we sent our prayers out to 22 families for the loss of their loved ones at the Ariana Grande bombing at one of her concerts in Manchester and honestly if I keep going down the list of horrific incidents happening around the globe we would be he here all day.

On Sunday October 1st, 2017 over 30,000 innocent souls gathered together to celebrate country music, at the Route 91 Harvest Festival, and who better to headline than Jason Aldean right? At approximately 10:08 pm an active shooter by the name of Stephen Paddock, Texas native age 64, started shooting over 11 rounds of bullets into the crowd. About 60 people and counting have been killed and over 500 hundred people seriously wounded. Paddock has been described in the media as a ‘lone wolf’ and as a white male in America, once again the news fails to describe him as what he is: a terrorist.  

Of course the dictionary defines a terrorist as ‘a person who uses unlawful violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political pursuit’ however let's be honest, society, racial organizations and hate groups have attached a certain appearance to the word ‘terrorist’. It is no coincidence that muslims get attacked and racially profiled as ‘terrorists’ regardless of any political stance and more in regards to their physical appearance and race. A terrorist can be any human being, of any political stance, gender, ethnicity , who uses violence, weapons and intimidation to pursue acts of aggression and brutality to a group of innocent people.

 

Stephen Paddock was found with over 23 guns and automatic weapons on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel Casino and Resort. What makes this specific incident unorthodox is that there are speculations that sights of other shooters have been detected. Plenty of videos and pictures have been released of gunshots being fired way below the 32nd floor. Australian neighbor (Mr. Hodge) in the hotel to Paddock, claims seeing multiple shooters and that police are responsible for killing a hotel security guard.

Another aspect of this ordeal that does not add up: a woman, 45 minutes prior to the shooting, was carried out by security for messing with another lady, telling everyone around her ‘you all are going to die tonight’. There has not been any follow up on her, her identity or her whereabouts. Paddocks partner, Marilou Danley, was also questioned in regards to any association with the shooting as she arrived in Los Angeles Airport.  

As for gun control, when is the time to truly talk about it? The right to bear arms is embedded in the constitution, we all understand that, but no human being needs an automatic weapon in their possession, and how many people need to be hurt before we comprehend that? Instead there are talks of walls being built, travel bans being implemented, healthcare for over millions of innocent people being taken away, yet gun violence that has taken the lives of too many isn't even on the radar?

 

Amongst all of the obscene images, videos and horrible stories, believe it or not there are some heroes in this crowd. A couple by the names Ashtyn Zamora and Cody Boyles helped medics at the scene, carrying limbs and pressing wounds, as they were dodging bullets simultaneously. On her facebook she posted:

“It is so senseless and sad that one person could so easily rip apart hundreds of lives and families, simply because they were "distraught". But more than anything, what stuck with me, was the droves of people jumping into action in any way they could- perfect strangers applying pressure to wounds, using their trucks to transport the injured, or even just holding somebody's hand who needed it. This world is a crazy place, but I choose to believe that we are still good people.”

Their story is just one, among the thousands of heroic acts throughout the shooting. Hundreds of people in Las Vegas stood in line at 4am to donate blood for those in need. I understand how easy it is to lose hope in these situations. There is nothing wrong with feeling shocked and sad and helpless through such times and in reality it is becoming a norm that we want nothing to do with.

 

Waking up everyday is becoming harder and harder when you feel so hopeless but this is the fight we all talked about for so long. These are the times that are here to teach us that time is too precious to waste, these are the times to hold your loved ones closer and closer, these are the times to chase your dreams and do something you absolutely love. These are the times to show kindness to one another, to support each other, to push each other up and rise above. Now, right now, is the time, not tomorrow, not yesterday, right now.  

Deidre Curiel is a CUSITEMUSIC.com Blogger out of Chicago

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