In the wake of the recent Washington Navy Yard shootings, it’s hard not to wonder why an incident like this has happened again. From Fort Hood to Sandy Hook Elementary to the Aurora, Colo., movie theater shootings, the question goes beyond gun control.
After every incident, once the shooter is identified, stories flood the press about the characteristics, personalities and habits of that individual. Oftentimes reports surface of questionable behavior that should have been looked into, but wasn’t.
Why is it that we always wait until after a horrific event to weigh the effects and try to take action from there? It seems like we’re continually repeating mistakes and missing potential warning signs. The recent Navy Yard shooting should be our wake-up call that our old procedures need some updating.
In a recent CNN report, Deborah Feyerick looked further into this idea.
“Whenever a mass killer strikes, it often seems to come out of the blue,” Feyerick said. “But in the days that follow, we often learn about warning signs that were missed…that appear to be the case after the Washington Navy Yard shootings where the shooter told police he was hearing voices.”
Yes, events like these sometimes are inevitable; however, we shouldn’t be just reactionary for a few days and then lapse into inaction until another breaking news event occurs.
We need to take the time to not only reflect on what happened but also respond in a more in-depth way that allows us to take better steps to prevent more incidents and deaths from occurring in the future.