7 dead...how many more to go?
I first heard the news of the shootings in Wisconsin this morning on my way to my work placement via German radio. At first, I thought, I must have misunderstood and believed that my language abilities had gotten the better of me. Although, however much I tired the word ‘Terrorist-Angriff’ could not have been clearer. From what I understood, at the time, was that a shooting had taken place in a town called Wisconsin in the USA specifically aimed at the Sikh community. 7 people had been murdered, the victims being one woman and five men as well as a police-officer, who was on site during the tragedy. It has not been said as to why exactly the 40 year old Wade Michael Page carried out the massacre but sources state that it is linked to White supremacist groups in the US. However, perhaps we should pause for a moment and put aside the killing of the innocent 7 people but concentrate as to why the attack took place at a place so holy and sacred to over 27 million Sikhs in the world. Does anyone have the right to go and kill people in a place where people go to pray and to be in peace? Furthermore, does anyone have the right to take away lives of other innocent human beings?
Latest sources are reporting that shooter Page was a veteran of the US army and served in the military between the years of 1992-1998. It has also been reported that Page was discharged from the army due to ‘patterns of misconduct’ and had been citied ‘drunk’ whilst on duty. Whilst the motives of the far right punk rock band member and an ex-veteran are still not clear, the actions of Page have shocked the world and thus have caused anti-American demonstrations across all continents. One cannot help but wonder if this truly was what the murderer intended to do or whether Page had any intention to kill so many innocent people.
President Obama gave a speech earlier today and stated that everyone was ‘heart-broken’ over the events that took place and ordered all flags in public buildings to be flown half-mast until Friday evening. Obama also mentioned that if the killer had any intention to stir up racism and ethnic tensions and that the American people should ‘recoil’ from any type of behavior linked to the massacre. The FBI later reported that they were investigating it as an act of ‘domestic terrorism’. This is quite ironic as to the fact that Page was once ‘supposedly’ protecting the country from terrorist threats that Page was finally to perform himself before being shot and killed by the Police.
Page was, in the past, protecting and fighting for over 300 million American citizens with people putting their trust in him only to find that a few years later Page was to carry out an act that may prevent people from trusting their own government and even their closest friends. I ask you this; how far will acts like this of the killing of 7 innocent Sikhs in a place of worship go? Should people such as Page be forgiven for their actions because of their constant ‘drunkenness’ or if they have a ‘mental condition’? Why do we need to be reminded by such a tragedy almost to the day of horrific massacre in Norway last year again by a European White supremacist? Should we be afraid of visiting our places of worship because of the horrific tragedies that we have witnessed or more so be alarmed about the fact that supremacist groups are gaining more and more power?
How far will acts of terrorism go? When will it all stop? When will we all say enough is
enough... and start to respect and cherish our differences that makes us all human.