There have been several proposals on DK about how to best remember the victims of the mass murder of students of Connecticut, especially the teachers who did so much to protect their charges. Some have suggested legislation, some demonstration, some other forms of activism. These things are appropriate and necessary, but perhaps we should be thinking bigger, about a way to literally carve our respect in stone.
The National Mall in Washington has monuments to servicemen who died in times of war, to politicians, and to activists - all of whom have done their duty and served this country. However there is not one stone standing on another to honor the teachers who serve every single day of every year to educate our children, and in times of fire, earthquake, or mad gunman lay their lives on the line, all for pathetic levels of pay.
So can we start a movement to raise a statue on the National Mall to honor the teachers who gave their lives to save children at Columbine, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, and at so many other places and times? Can we not honor those who nave thought they would be in the gunsights of a madman, never trained to face down a murderer, but who rose to the occasion and saved the lives of those children?
I suggest that the monument have the names of teachers who acted bravely in times of disasters both natural and manmade, and include a likeness of Vicki Leigh Soto, the teacher who hid her students and misled the gunman in Sandy Hook. She is a hero by any standard I can imagine, and deserves to represent the heroes among her profession. (This would of course be subject to approval by her surviving family.)
It is possible that some people may object to a monument in our Capital that would commemorate the innocent domestic victims of gun violence. Such a monument to unionized workers who died as a result of guns may possibly be seen by them as controversial. I say let them make their objections - I look forward to that argument.
So any thoughts about this? Any suggested amendments, any proposed designs? Is it worth starting a petition on Whitehouse.gov? If there is enough support here, I will start one.