My Very Unpopular Opinion

Even this could not keep my mind off Newtown, CT.
Even this could not keep my mind off Newtown, CT today. And, I love this.

I’ve struggled for days now trying to find an appropriate place for my mind to rest regarding the events in Newtown, Connecticut. Alas, no matter in which direction I turn, I cannot find my zen about this topic. There is not a thing about it that is right. I’ve done my best to avoid too much detail in the news, to acknowledge the miserable facts without becoming morbidly curious or rushing to judgment or conclusions. At the end of the day, as cold and as hard as it seems, I need to live my life in the wake of these all too common violent attacks. So, that’s what I’ve been trying to do. I’ve been trying to distance myself from the news to keep from losing my entire holiday season to a dark abyss of the unthinkable. It has not been easy. Even my guilty escape, Facebook, has become a non-stop editorial column about the event.

Because I can’t seem to escape it, despite an entire day spent on a ski slope, tonight I would like to offer just this one comment. As we continue to think about the families who lost loved ones on December 14th, I hope we don’t forget that Adam Lanza left behind a father and a brother who are innocent of his crimes. They lost loved ones too. And, worse than that, they will have to live with the the anger, the scrutiny, and the unanswerable questions. I can’t imagine facing both the loss of my mother and brother and the non-stop judgment of the American people. My heart goes out to that family. They will never understand what happened or why, but they will always be held somewhat accountable via guilt-by-association. That’s a tough road to walk.



  1. I think that watching,reading, listening to as little news as possible is a good idea. I try to scroll through FB posts that keep addressing this. I just try to have faith that the families are dealing with the grief as best they can just like I would if I were in the situation. Personally I would not like the whole nation looking in on this past 24-28 hours, but there is little we can do about that in this day and age. But I don”t need to have this in my face all the time. As regards to finding your zen in all this…maybe your zen is to wander around without your zen for a bit. I like your attitude in this. Happy holiday to you, your husband and your sons. Best, Ken W.

  2. It shouldn’t be unpopular! People need to feel more love and less hate, if we all just found more love in our lives maybe things like this would not happen as often

  3. Here, here! Tom and I talked about it on day one. While I will never condone what that poor “kid” did he was obviously broken enough to DO that act. What causes someone to go there? That has to be pain in itself.
    I can’t take FB, either. SIgn this petition – no, thank you. Wear these colors – no, thank you.
    I’ve stopped watching the news as well. I just think about those poor families grieving for the loss of their kids, friends & family. 😦

  4. I am with you Justine. I can’t put the events, emotions and judgements of Friday somewhere else, it doesn’t work. I am finding it hard to pray, even. I keep looking for answers. All I can come to is, not to let go of hope. And that’s my prayer for everyone. Hope, we simply cannot abandon it and the promise hope brings.

  5. A potentially unpopular reply:

    It is not possible for rational minds to comprehend, rationalize or accept the acts of irrational people. There apper to be a lot of people wrapping themselves in vicarious grief and shock. This may be the only way for them to work through this strange and tragic event.

    There are no instructions, no rule books, no experiences to teach us how to handle this.

    Why is this circumstance different than any other circumstance in which people die? A child’s death is without doubt the most heartbreaking and tragic event we must witness on this planet, but is it fair for us to exalt the circumstances of these deaths above others?

    What about the child that died on an operating table the day before? What about the child that died in a car accident the day after? What about the child that is dying in a cancer hospital as we speak? What about the baby that was shaken to death last month by his drunken father?

    Regardless of the circumstance, every child’s death is a profound loss. Whether it comes in wholesale quantities by a mad gunman, by a madman gassing children because they were Jews, by a zealot gassing villages in the middle east over another religious quarrel, or if death comes silently in the night.

    Your observation herein is a profound one, Justine. On its heels the thoughts of Gail, hopess13, and Edie. Sympathy is due for all those suffering in the world.

    We can’t stop death or madmen. We can only put our hands together and know that in this life we all walk the same road, bound for the same destination.

    I wish you peace.


    1. Paz…thanks for your reply. You’re right that suffering is everywhere. As a nation, we tend to get behind the things that are most visible, which means that people focus on what the media presents. It’s too bad that the media doesn’t more often present the plight of the homeless or the hungry or the mentally ill. Then people might find more outrage and desire more to make a difference. Wishing you peaceful holidays!

  6. This tragic event certainly stirred up a lot to think about. I have to say, I have more questions than answers.

      1. I have ceased watching the news, reading the paper, listening to news on radio. It is amazingly peaceful. I was distraught after the tragedy, but I have moved on. I have to. If I were a family member or lived in that town then the grief and whatever would be carried out longer most likely. I agree that these kids were unique, but so are yours and so are my neighbors. And if I were a parent I wouldn’t want my child’s picture and funeral on the news. I really do not like the “splashing” of grief all over the country. As with you Justine, my view is unpopular and others may say I am cold. Well so be it. A person who is true to their nature will often hear the grumblings of the masses. But it really doesn’t matter, now does it. As it says somewhere in the I Ching, the superior person faces the dislike of the masses with composure. Popularity is the least of his/her concerns. He simply does what is right and then, with peaceful heart, moves on.


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