The city of Omaha has begun to recover from the shock of last week’s tragedy inside Von Maur at Westroads Mall when a gunman shot 14 people, killing eight, and then shooting himself. Proof of this recovery is evident in people’s desire to see someone pay for the crimes — monetarily, that is. Yes, the people of Omaha are now discussing whom the victims’ families should sue.
I should state that the victims’ families and friends were too busy attending funerals and memorial services today to call radio stations and nominate people they could sue for these tragic events.
No, the callers were people who were not involved, who did not lose loved ones. Only the average sue-crazy shit stirrers were wasting airtime calling Tom Becka’s show. These are people of the same ilk as the sleazy lawyers who called victims’ families last week with plans on how they could pursue a lawsuit.
The actual victims and their families are too shocked and grief-stricken to think about whom they might sue, as if some dollar amount could make up for the lives lost last Wednesday.
I hate to state the obvious, but the killer is dead, folks. There’s not much revenge you can exact upon him other than to call him an evil, psycho freak or refuse to utter or print his name, depriving him of the notoriety he so desired.
The shooter was 19. His parents aren’t responsible for his actions, so they can’t be sued. One caller did, however, suggest that perhaps the shooter’s stepfather could be sued if he hadn’t properly locked up the AK-47 that the shooter stole and used.
Maybe mall security is responsible for not stopping the shooter, whom they had noted as looking “suspicious.” The fact is, mall security can’t just stop people because they look suspicious — that’s a discrimination lawsuit waiting to happen. Even if security hadn’t lost track of the shooter, they likely wouldn’t have had reasonable cause to stop him. Besides, if they had stopped him, he probably would have pulled his gun on them. And armed only with mace and clubs, it is improbable that the security guards would have been able to stop him. Rather, they may have been the first victims shot.
Maybe Von Maur is responsible because the tragedy wouldn’t have happened if the store hadn’t been open that day. Maybe baby Jesus is responsible because some of the people who died wouldn’t have been in the store if it wasn’t the Christmas shopping season. Sen. Ernie Chambers sued God, so someone might as well sue Jesus.
The fact of the matter is that the shooter is responsible. He made the decision to shoot up a department store that day. He was the evil, sick fuck who terrorized all those people. He acted of his own free will. No one else is responsible.
Most Omahans are still in shock, grieving for the victims and their families, and doing all they can to offer comfort, support and financial aid. They are deeply saddened by the events that occurred in Von Maur and expressing their grief with memorials, poems and flowers on the front steps of Von Maur.
But there’s always the sludge at the bottom of the barrel. Shame on you sue-happy assholes. Rather than trying to figure out who’s responsible now that the shooter is dead, you ought to be showing support, making monetary donations to help the families and working to better our community. But rather than volunteer your own time or money, your great idea is to sue and make someone else pay. Merry fucking Christmas to you, too.