Another Senseless School Shooting

It is hard for me to imagine what the parents of high school students in Chardon, Ohio must be thinking tonight.  One student was killed and four more were injured after a student went on a shooting rampage at the Chardon High School this morning.

As parents, we struggle with the awful randomness of events like this.  You send your children off to a school that is just like thousands of others, and then one day you receive the horrible news that your child’s unremarkable school has been the scene of a remarkable and tragic event.

Notwithstanding a lot of speculation — much of it offered without a lot of factual basis — it is not yet clear why the shooter acted as he did.  The parents of students who were victims must wonder whether their children were just in the wrong place at the wrong time, and struggle with why the shooter, among the many students are dealing with significant issues in high schools across the country, decided to act out his problems so violently.

Are we to the point where another school shooting seems commonplace, and is no longer capable of generating outrage?  If so, we should fear for our future.  If our children cannot go to a public school without fear that they might be gunned down by a troubled classmate, or by a disgruntled nut, then we have lost an essential part of what makes up a civilized country.  A society that cannot provide for safe education for its youth is hard-pressed to call itself a society at all.

A Frozen End To The “Lake Effect”

Anyone who has ever lived in northeast Ohio has heard of the “lake effect.” It happens during early winter, before Lake Erie freezes over.  Storms pass over the open, shallow waters of the lake, pick up warmth and moisture, and then dump greater amounts of snow on Cleveland and points east.

Every year northern Ohioans hope for word that Lake Erie has frozen over.  Today the National Weather Service announced that Lake Erie is 90 percent frozen over, so the “lake effect” has ended for this year.  Folks in Chardon, Ohio are happy to hear that news — they’ve already received 95 inches of snow this winter.  That’s just shy of 8 feet of snow.  Chardon probably has the most accomplished snow shovelers in the world.

With Lake Erie now frozen and the “lake effect” ended, attention can now be focused on the drunken idiots who drive their SUVs out onto the lake and fall through the ice.