Sunday, March 24, 2013

Linda's Sandy Hook Run for the Families race report

Submitted by Linda Iroff @LindaofNote

Before I began my virtual 5K Sandy Hook Run for the Families, I confess I was feeling angry and frustrated. Angry and frustrated over the rush to purchase weapons and ammunition following the tragedy of December 14, 12012; over the unabated gun death toll in the past 3+ months; over the cowardice of our legislators and their inability to do anything meaningful about it, especially compared to the bravery of the teachers and administrators at Sandy Hook School who gave their lives to protect the children.

Despite the public uproar and demand for change, I thought, nothing will happen. A few ineffective eviscerated laws will be passed, the furor will die down, and the deaths will continue until the next major tragedy.

But as I began walking, I thought of something else: the tag line used by the organizers of the 5K: Love Wins.

At first it seemed simply a naive feel-good sentiment. But as I thought more about it, I realized it’s true. Slowly over time, and never completely (for there will always be evil in the world), love wins.

Think about the changes in our country over the decades in terms of racial and sexual discrimination. Think of the ongoing sea change just in the last year or two regarding marriage equality. Think of how we have made cars safer, decreasing highway deaths despite the increase in miles driven; of how we’ve decreased the rate of cigarette smoking and concomitant disease through a combination of regulation, taxation and education; how we’ve decreased drunk driving, changing the view of it from a humorous antic to the crime it is.

Slowly, over time, and never completely, change does come.

When I completed my walk, I read the #run3rd twitter strand, and was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support for all those who took part. I looked through the Run for the Families Facebook group, at the photos and postings from those who ran in Hartford and virtually around the country, and was brought to tears. I thought of the tens of thousands who were involved in making this event happen.

And I knew we will not rest until change comes to the culture of gun violence in our country.

Love will win.

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