"Another shooting," he said. "At a mushroom farm near San Francisco. Eight shot, seven dead."
My immediate response was...nothing. Not anger. Not outrage. Not grief. It was strange. It was as if I'd been struck by mental and emotional paralysis. I couldn't even dredge up anything to say about this horrific news. I felt out of words. After a few moments I managed to say, rather half-heartedly, "That's terrible."
How can I explain it? It was if it it were too much effort to feel anything. It was if there were a rock on my heart that I didn't have the strength to lift.
Less than 48 hours earlier eleven people had been gunned to death at a dance hall in Monterey Park, a community a few miles east of downtown Los Angeles. They were older people, mostly Asian, people in their 50's, 60's and 70's, murdered by a 72-year-old madman with an assault rifle. They were people's parents and grandparents and they liked to go out dancing. And now they're gone.
I've written letters to my representatives. I've written letters to my local newspaper.
I've gone to protests calling for a ban on assault weapons.
And yet the other day as I was driving home from the supermarket listening to the news on the radio I heard that President Biden has again called for an assault weapons ban.
"Oh, thank you," I said to the radio. And the rock lifted a millimeter.