I’m not sure what the answer is regarding gun violence and mass shootings in the United States. But what I do know is that “thoughts and prayers” aren’t cutting it.
Some three decades ago, the term “going postal” was coined. It was derived from a series of incidents where former/current United States Postal Service workers were involved in workplace violence.
As we are all very aware, such acts of violence aren’t just confined to postal employees. Shootings have happened at schools, restaurants, stores, nightclubs, churches, universities and malls. Just this past weekend, a Los Angeles-area dance hall, that is popular with older patrons of Asian heritage, was the site of yet another mass shooting. And less than 48 hours later about 385 miles north, a pair of Half Moon Bay locations were the scene of multiple shootings.
Although the magnitude of the type of violence experienced in these two California communities hasn’t hit close to home, the possibility is in the back of my mind — especially when going to places where large groups of people congregate.
During a recent trip to Tri-Cities, I dropped my husband off at Groovy Records to do some vinyl shopping while I was headed across town to Columbia Center.
John had wrapped up a pair of my old Vans for Christmas. As I was opening the package, he waited for the puzzled look on my face. Since he didn’t have a chance to get me a gift card, this was his creative way to let me know that I should buy some new kicks.
Before I dropped him off, John reminded me that if I heard or saw anything unusual to get out or duck for cover. He is quite aware that the journalist in me often wants to know what’s going on.
Because I was going to both the Vans store and Old Navy, I decided not to walk through the mall between the stores. I figured it would save my knee from having to walk as far. I ended up parking by Macy’s, headed to the Vans store for my shoes and then drove around and entered through Dick’s Sporting Goods to gain access to Old Navy.
While I refuse to live in fear, I think it’s prudent to be conscious of our surroundings and make plans accordingly. Years ago, this type of forethought wouldn’t have been a part of a simple trip to the mall. However, we live in a different time and my joints aren’t getting any younger.
Tammy Malgesini, the Hermiston Herald community editor, enjoys spending time with her husband and two canine kids, as well as entertaining herself with random musings.
Tammy Malgesini has worked as a community reporter/columnist for EO Media Group since 2006. She earned a psychology/sociology degree from George Fox College. In her spare time, Tammy enjoys spending time with her husband and two German shepherds.
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