The View from the Hill on Thursday 3rd June
This terrible incident in Cumbria has reminded all of us that life is precious and that no one has a promise of a tomorrow.
People walking in a quiet town, going about their business, literally being in the wrong place at the wrong time find themselves caught up in the maelstrom of one mans descent into madness.
Hearing the witnesses talk about their experiences on the radio so soon after it all happened, I was amazed that so many had the emotional strength to engage with reporters.
I did get really fed up with the BBC reporters on all media prefacing their remarks with statements like "Whitehaven, a quiet place where things like this just don't happen". Well where do they happen then?
What was Hungerford, what was Dunblane?
They also rolled out a local clergyman to talk for the community - a pet hate of mine - I'm sure the chap was very nice but how many of that community go to his church?
A personal tragedy for the area and for all the families involved and with the death of the suspected offender by his own hand, we may never really understand why he did what he did, why he chose to stop and shoot some and chose to drive past others - and this will be the cause of much more pain and distress.
I lost my temper with the chap from the pro firearms lobby, defending guns and gun ownership and I just think if the only argument we have is that to ban them might affect Olympic shooters, well that's just a bit weak.
It's all too soon after the event to make snap decisions about these things anyway.
Just a sad day.
No pithy quotes today - not sure what you could say to sum up these events.