I am travelling in Canada and sitting in Toronto Pearson airport at gate B19 waiting with a crowd for my connecting flight on 24 July. On a big screen, silent with subtitles, the TV news is showing poignant tributes with flowers and chalk messages near the scene following a mass shooting in the city’s Greektown district where two people died and thirteen others have been injured.
A couple, both maybe in their thirties, are sitting near to me. He says to her, “You know, in the States for two dead we wouldn’t call that a mass shooting. Wouldn’t even make the evening news, most likely.”
I don’t think they meant it badly. But it troubles me in two ways. To say such a thing in public and so matter-of-fact when people around are maybe hurting. And that for the States it is true.