The Children Deserve Better

Last week’s school shooting is still on my mind. As terrible as things were when we first learned of the shooting, they are now worse.

We now know that the police didn’t try save the children because the classroom door was locked. The cops told us that they felt OK about not going in because the shooting had stopped. We now know from the reports about the children calling 911 that the shooting didn’t stop. We also know there were wounded children who later died because of lack of medical care.

We learned that the school police resource officer left the building and that he drove by the shooter and didn’t do anything. We were first told that he had fired at the killer and did his best to keep him from entering the school.

We were told there was an open door in the back of the school that allowed the killer to enter the building. Then we learned that video footage shows the teacher accused of leaving it open actually closed it, but the automatic lock failed.

We were told that the Uvalde police department was well-trained and deserved the 40% of the town’s budget that it swallowed every year. But in reality when they were called on, they decided that it was too scary to confront a killer with an assault weapon and they hung around waiting for it to be over.

And then on Tuesday we found out that the chief of the school district police stopped communicating with the Texas Rangers 2 days earlier. And then that the Uvalde police department and the school district police department are no longer cooperating with the Texas Rangers.

The children and teachers massacred last week deserve better.

My parish has a tradition that this song is the last hymn at every funeral: