Jacksonville Shooting
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Mass Shootings Are Even More Real When They Occur In Your Hometown

I never thought it would happen to my city.

Mass Shootings Are Even More Real When They Occur In Your Hometown

On the Sunday afternoon of August 26, 2018, I was conducting my typical routine of procrastinating and mindlessly scrolling through all my social media accounts. While on Facebook, I saw an article from one of my hometown local news stations saying there had been a shooting. It was the only article I saw of its kind and there wasn't much information available, so I kept scrolling. While talking on the phone with a friend from home, I found out more information. I found out that it was a mass shooting and that it had taken place at the Jacksonville Landing where I had been not even two weeks before.

The scariest part about finding out that a mass shooting had taken place in my hometown was the fact that before "mass" was even a factor, I hadn't batted an eye. Shootings are no stranger to Jacksonville and I didn't realize I had become so desensitized to random acts of violence until the mass shooting was announced.

With that being said, I'm no stranger to local violence. Like I said, shootings are unfortunately common in Jacksonville. On top of that, shootings are no stranger to Florida in general. I remember waking up to the news about Christina Grimmie and bawling my eyes out. I remember waking up a day later to the news about the Pulse shooting and being an absolute mess. I had never experienced violence so close to home before with such frequency. Not only was I a huge Christina Grimmie fan, but I was an LGBT ally and a Florida native. The senseless attacks felt all too personal.

When the Parkland shooting occurred, I was no longer sad. I was angry. In fact, I was enraged.

That rage pushed me to participate in the "March For Our Lives" rally. I really felt like I was doing something; like I was making a tangible difference. Gone were the times of a mass shooting blowing over in a few weeks. This one was going to be remembered, and things were going to change.

When I heard and saw the news about the mass shooting at the Jacksonville Landing, I was numb. I had so many thoughts running through my head. How dare someone do this to my town? To me? How dare you make me worry about my friends and family when I'm two hours away? How dare you make me check Facebook every five minutes to make sure everyone is safe? To make sure no one I know is dead?

It didn't become real until I saw that the video from the stream that was going on during the shooting was number one on the YouTube trending page. In the next few trending spots underneath it were other videos about the shooting. Celebrities and famous politicians started talking about it. National news organizations started talking about it. We started talking about it at school.

People started sending their prayers like it was going to make us feel better; like it was going to do something. It had always enraged me when people would send out thoughts and prayers after a mass shooting, but it never made me feel like this. I feel angry, but I also feel jealous, hurt, and confused.

It's so hard to not be angry and not take this as a personal attack. After Parkland, it seemed like something might change. It seemed like we were safe. Now it seems as though Florida might be plagued - plagued with senseless gun violence and also plagued with a desensitization to said violence.

Raising our voices and taking action are the only ways anything is ever going to change.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Why I Don't Write (Or Read) An "Open Letter To My Future Husband/Wife"

Because inflated expectations and having marriage as your only goal are overrated.

Urban Intellectuals

Although I have since changed my major I remember the feverish hysteria of applying to nursing school--refreshing your email repeatedly, asking friends, and frantically calculating your GPA at ungodly hours of the night. When my acceptance came in I announced the news to friends and family with all the candor of your average collegiate. I was met with well wishes, congratulations, and interrogations on the program's rank, size, etc. Then, unexpectedly, I was met with something else.

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Meet the creators making their voices heard on Odyssey.

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week
Why I Write On Odyssey

At Odyssey, we're on a mission to encourage constructive discourse on the Internet. That's why we created the response button you can find at the bottom of every article.

Last week, our response writers sparked some great conversations right here on our homepage. Here are the top three response articles:

Keep Reading... Show less

"Arthur's Perfect Christmas" Is The Perfect Holiday Special, Move Over Charlie Brown

Arthur Read is here to deliver the real meaning of Christmas.


As the holiday season draws nearer, many of us find ourselves drawn to the same old Rankin-Bass Christmas specials and the perennial favorite, "A Charlie Brown Christmas." However, I would like to suggest an overlooked alternative, "Arthur's Perfect Christmas." It is a heartfelt, funny, and surprisingly inclusive Christmas special that deserves more recognition.

Keep Reading... Show less

Reclaim Your Weekends From The 'Sunday Scaries' With 'Self-Love Sundays' Instead

Everyone needs a day to themselves sometimes.

Reclaim Your Weekends From The 'Sunday Scaries' With 'Self-Love Sundays' Instead
Olivia DeLucia

Laid back and taking it easy — sometimes that is the motto we all need after a busy week. Sunday scaries? Yes, they are valid – but you know what else is? A Sunday full of self-love. A lazy Sunday spent doing what you feel needs to be done to ease into the next week. Self-Love Sundays are a guilty pleasure that isn't only essential for our mind, and body, but are also a surprisingly proactive way to devote the upcoming week with a clear mindset.

So, what is a more suitable way to dedicate your week's end than a beautifully, connected playlist to accompany your face masks and journaling? Cheers, to a Self-Love Sunday (and a playlist intertwined with it to match). (Please note: "Sunday Morning" isn't included in this list, due to the obvious, but feel free to blast it anyway, we know you want to).

Keep Reading... Show less

On Sunday Morning

Breaking Free

Sunset Girl

The sun rose and peeked through the sheer curtains. Rose’s alarm shrieked. The loud bells caused her phone to jump on the side table. It was time for her to get ready for church. Blindly reaching for her phone, she shut the alarm off and pulled at the covers providing her a cocoon of warmth and tossed them to the side. She swept her bare feet across the bed to touch the cool wooden floor.

Rose softly tiptoed to the corner of the bedroom to grab her clothes dangling on the arm of the bedroom chair. Scooping all of the items of her chosen outfit, she headed to the bathroom hoping that she wouldn’t drop anything.

Round, piercing blue eyes stared back at her in the bathroom mirror. Rose fingered the wrinkles forming around her eyes. So many of them bore signs of laughter and smiling. Slowly dropping her hands, she couldn’t remember the last time she laughed in her home with Tom. Shaking her head as if to erase the negative thoughts, she reached for her makeup bag and went through her regular routine.

Applying her favorite deep rose lipstick, Rose headed downstairs to make her coffee and bagel to take with her to church. The smell of dark-roast coffee swirled in the air as Rose sliced her cinnamon raisin bagel. Hearing the Keurig sputter with the fresh brew, Rose found the interruption of the stillness comforting. The toaster signaled that her bagel was done with a soft pop. It had a delicious golden brown color. Placing the bagel on the counter, she generously spread honey nut flavored cream cheese across both halves. Gathering her bible, notebook, and pens from the side table on the porch she stuffed them into her purse. Purse hanging on her right shoulder she juggled her coffee and bagel in both of her hands as she headed to the garage.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments