Families have been shattered by the loss of fathers, mothers, sons and daughters. Survivors will carry forever the scars of the attack. The community is united in its desire to find out why and how the attack occurred and to prevent it from happening again. With this in mind I share some of the lessons we need to learn from this tragedy. While they may seem obvious the comments of our leaders suggest they may be ignored.
1- There are evil people in this world, and they are here. We have long lived our lives comfortable in the illusion that terror attacks and mindless killings were for places like Israel and Iran. Those illusions have been shattered by the Islamist’s brutal attack.
2- Our government is incapable of rooting out potential attackers. The female attacker gave false information on her visa and was a known member of one of the most radical Mosques in the world. She was “screened” when she was allowed into the country and passed through easily. She was not on any watch list. Something to remember the next time we are told not to worry because the government conducts a “rigorous” screening process for all who wish to come here.
3- Political correctness has no place in a battle against terror. A neighbor who saw suspicious behavior did not report it for fear of being considered racist. Continuing the absurd policies that make a 90 year old grandmother as likely to be stopped at an airport as a 30 year old single man of Arab descent makes no sense. Not all Muslims are radical, but the overwhelming majority of terrorists are today. We need to live in this reality.
4- Gun laws don’t work to prevent mass killings. California has the toughest gun laws in the country. The gun laws being put forth by the president already exist in California and they did nothing. We all want to make the nation safer and it does us no good to be focusing on regulations that have already been proven useless.
5- Law enforcement was unable to stop these attacks. Police were at the scene within four minutes. In those four minutes there were over 30 casualties. The sad saying that “When seconds matter, the police are minutes away,” was proven true. As much as we hate to admit it, in circumstances such as this only an armed citizen, already present, is in a place to make a difference.
6- Police officers displayed sacrificial bravery. The officer who told the evacuating citizens that he would “take a bullet” for them has been deservedly praised.
7- This will happen again. Our world has changed forever.
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