International violence deserves attention in news

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Argus Staff, Editorial

 

The desperate cries of mourning mothers could be heard echoing down brick hallways of the local hospital after the April 2 attack on Garissa University College, Kenya.

Al-Shabaab, Somalian allies of al-Queda, claimed ownership of the shooting. Last Thursday, 147 were killed, most of them students. In addition, 104 more were injured, with 19 severely injured. According to a medic on the scene, almost all of the victims were shot in the back of the head as they ran for cover.

A few students were able to stay alive by hiding under piles of bodies, one saying she was forced to smear the blood of a school mate on herself to look like she had already been hit. This is just al-Shabaab’s latest, in a long bloody history of attacks on Kenya.

In the wake of this horrifying act of terrorism, there are many thoughts and frustrations that come to mind. Kenya’s poor national security poses a huge threat to Kenyan safety.

The University is located just 225 miles away from Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, which should have made it a safer place for education. After last year’s attack on Westgate Mall, 10,000 new policemen were supposed to be recruited into the force.

It wasn’t until after this even deadlier attack that police numbers were increased. President Uhuru agrees that more officers are needed to keep his country safe, yet that doesn’t change what has already happened.

On a more international level, it’s hard to understand why corrupted people can commit mass shootings in the name of faith, when religion is supposed to better its people. Why is peace so hard to achieve among those of faith?

The Argus hopes that, in the face of violence, people will remember the importance of peacemakers. Especially after this attack that targeted Christians, Christians worldwide should not retaliate.

This is especially a concern in areas where Muslims (who mainly oppose violence and do not identify with their extremist counterparts) are a minority. It is only from listening that different faiths can work together to find an understanding.

There are also many who are worried that here in America, these international attacks will be swept under the American media’s rug, a rug of celebrity gossip and “thanks Obama” comments.

In hindsight of how America handled the extremist attacks on Baga, Nigeria last January, the Argus would say this is a valid issue to consider.

Though the deadliest massacre in Nigerian history happened around the same time as Charlie Hebdo, it received almost no attention in the American media. Allowing such monumental acts of violence to go without coverage belittles the value of black lives.

While together, all of these issues and tragedies related to the recent attack on Garissa University College are a lot to process, most importantly we should remember to empathize for our fellow humans.

College shootings happen all the time in our country, so some of us might know how to relate personally. Our hearts should go out to the families and friends who lost a loved one in the attack. Maybe that’s the best way to start making a difference.