Vegas Shooting Leaves the Country in Shock
Las Vegas, Nevada Sept 1, 2017: Firing upon a concert going crowd on Sunday night in Vegas, left 58 plus people dead and around 515 injured. Some of the injured are critical. All this happened at an outdoor concert near the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. It is one of the horrifying mass shootings in history of United states.
The suspect was identified as Stephen Paddock, a 64 year old local resident of Vegas. He opened fire on the crowd that had gathered for an open concert known as Route 91 Harvest Festival.. All this happened during the last performance of the concert.
As per Sheriff Lombardo, Mr. Paddock opened fire on the crowd from a hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel on Sunday night. The LVPD (Las Vegas Police Department) SWAT team found him dead when they got to his room. The police said that officers found Mr. Paddock dead in his room in the Mandalay Bay Hotel. The police found more firearms when they finally invaded his room. Sheriff Lombardo also said that the police were looking for “a companion” named Marilou Danley. The police authorities later said they were “confident” they have located her.
Eric Paddock a resident of Orlando and identified as the brother of the suspect, Stephen Paddock, told Newspaper, Orlando Sentinel, that he had already given his statement to the police. He said “We are completely dumbfounded & we can’t understand what happened.
Several online videos of the shooting show Mr. Aldean, who was the final performer, running off the stage as the gunfire started. Mr. Owen, told CNN that it was like “shooting fish in a barrel from where he was.”. Jake Owen shared the stage with Mr. Aldean when this shooting massacre started. “This is not an exaggeration: This shooting was going on for at least 10 minutes,” he added. “It was nonstop.”
Automatic gunfire can be clearly heard in videos from the grounds of the concert. People ran and lay down on the ground. They ducked for cover while thousands ran from the scene. People confirmed hearing several rounds of continuous gunfire.
One of the witnesses Gail David Said “Everyone was running, you could see people getting shot.” She also added “I’ve never been that scared in my life”
With all this happening in the most advanced and powerful nation of the world, we land on one question again i.e. amendment to the right to keep and bear arms. With semi automatic and automatic weapons as easily available as a can of Pepsi and Coke through a vending machine, are we not living in a constant fear of death. This is not the first incident that has shook the nation. Shootings in schools, colleges and public gatherings have become a regular news. The questions are
- Is there a psychological check or a test before issuing a gun license?
- Is there a check as to how many and what types of guns a person can and is buying?
- Is there a limit to the number of guns one can buy?
- Is there a definition or control around the type of guns that can be sold?
- How did Mr. Paddock carry so many guns into his room despite of security?
The mind is boggled and the heart cries. Our prayers go out to the families of the dead and injured. The mind questions as to how the government works? Despite of so many human lives lost and such everyday massacres, turning a blind eye to what has happened and what can happen in future is not the solution. This is not only a problem here in the United States, but across the globe. This issue needs to be addressed collectively and with an approach keeping the safety and well being of the people in mind.