In my freshman year at university, Seung-Hui Cho – a college student at Virginia Tech – opened fire on a lecture hall and killed 32 people. I was in complete shock, probably because this was the first incident of its kind that really hit home for me. If something like that could happen at Virginia Tech, it could happen at UCLA. Though this horrendous and unforgivable crime took place thousands of miles away, I was afraid. Afraid for the victims of the massacre, afraid for their families, afraid for myself. Aside from the conversations that I had with my mother on the phone between April and May of 2007, I have never admitted to anyone how rattled the Virginia Tech Massacre left me.
This week a graduate student in Neuroscience at the University of Collorado walked into a movie theatre with a small arsenal and murdered 12 people in their seats. Nearly 60 people were injured. The 10 men and women who did not survive the initial shooting have yet to be identified. I hope to add my voice to the millions expressing their condolences for the families who lost loved ones yesterday. We cannot possibly understand what they have gone through but we stand behind you.