While I have not discussed breaking news or political stories on my blog for some time, I felt it necessary to write something about the shooting in my home state of Arizona this past weekend. Congresswoman Gabrielle (Gabby) Giffords was shot and critically wounded, while she survived, 6 others were killed and 12 more were injured. It is such a tragedy that someone would want to hurt such a wonderful woman and compassionate Congresswoman. My family has known Gabby for years, my parents better than myself, but I always remember her being so kind when I’d see her. I know that she will overcome her injuries, as her doctors have been noting in press conferences she is doing remarkably well given her injury. It is difficult being so far away from home at this time, I wish that I could go to the vigils and show my support and love in person, for Gabby and everyone else that was killed, injured or close to those that were. For now I will continue absorbing all of the news and sending good thoughts to Arizona.

Vigil for Congresswoman Giffords at the AZ State Capitol, my parents are in the bottom right of this circle, some of our friends are with them. Photo: Ross Franklin, AP.

There has been a multitude of ideas of why the alleged shooter Jared Loughner did what he did, I am curious to see his true reasons come forward as his journey through our justice system continues. For now I am reading about the progress that Gabby is making, and hoping that our lawmakers, in Arizona and nationally, do more for troubled youth, work to make sure that incidents like this don’t happen and don’t just point the blame at one another. Our country is very fractured right now, we saw that in the 2010 election, I hope we can all come together to find some peace, acceptance and respect of one another’s views  to curb the violence, in speech and action. There are reports that the Westboro Baptist Church will be protesting the funeral of the 9-year old victim, Christina Taylor George, who was an innocent bystander. I hope that they give her and her family peace on what will undoubtedly be a difficult day.

My thoughts and prayers are in Arizona more than usual. For those of you looking for more information I suggest the Arizona local paper, the Arizona Republic at azcentral.com for complete coverage. Not only are they on the ground all the time covering the story, but I have found their reports more accurate than CNN and the NY Times. They also are covering how Arizonans are reacting more in depth than the national sources.