Words and reason fail when faced with such horror

It’s hard to know what to say about yesterday’s hor­rif­ic mas­sacre at Vir­ginia Tech, where a gun­man killed 32 peo­ple (at lat­est count) in two sep­a­rate inci­dents. Is this an indict­ment of an Amer­i­can cul­ture of vio­lence? Vir­ginia Tech has a strong mil­i­tary tra­di­tion, so is our war men­tal­i­ty to blame? Guns?, can we blame guns? Or how about the alien­ation of so many young peo­ple in our society?
Any answer seems glib and besides the point. This isn’t the time to be a pun­dit. Peo­ple snap for all sorts of rea­sons and usu­al­ly for mul­ti­ple rea­sons that can nev­er real­ly be untangled.
Like all humans, I’m shocked and sad­dened. I’ve spent time on the cam­pus and the stu­dents and fac­ul­ty I met were always warm and hos­pitable, gra­cious and open. What must they be going through? Think of the fear of the trapped stu­dents, the fear of par­ents turn­ing on the news, the fear of sur­vivors who will have to live with the mem­o­ries of this night­mare for the rest of their lives. I add my hum­ble words to the mil­lions of prayers that have been mur­mured these last twenty-four hours. May God com­fort the vic­tims alive and dead, includ­ing the shoot­er, who must cer­tain­ly be a vic­tim of some­thing himself.
How do we stop the vio­lence? How do we show our youth that vio­lence is not the way? And how do we get these damned guns out of their hands?