As time goes on, tragedy doesn’t get easier. Our nation has seen so many heartbreaking and senseless deaths in recent years and each one brings a new pain. It can be difficult to watch the news, scroll through Twitter, or even get out of bed, let alone to muster up the energy and sense of motivation to go to school or work in the face of trauma, most especially if you’re connected to or one of those affected.
For University of Nevada’s Las Vegas campus and its students, the recent Mandalay Bay shootings, the deadliest in history, are a heartbreak right in their own backyard. With 50 dead and hundreds injured, so many students have had to see friends and family suffer with loss, grief and coping.
Now the students are saying that the school’s response only added to their pain, instead of detracting from it.
The school decided to stay open and continue with its mandatory class schedules the very next day after the violence. Students felt betrayed and the lack of empathy in the face of tragedy was met with a strong response.
I have no words. UNLV and their professors disgust me. pic.twitter.com/YLlYgdS5VR
— Brooke Younie (@brookeyounie) October 2, 2017
— Jah Vish (@jvshgray) October 2, 2017
The school did send an email saying that they were “deeply saddened,” a message questioned by students.
I literally can't believe the lack of empathy and remorse UNLV has. It's bullshit.
— Cait (@caitlynicolem) October 2, 2017
IF GREATLY AFFECTED?! EVERYONE IS GREATLY AFFECTED https://t.co/1PMBqXMG9l
— Andrea (@andreaysalazar) October 2, 2017
One student also pointed out the disparity in reactions from other schools, which understandingly allowed their students more time to grieve as necessary.
Disappointed with how UNLV responded to what happened. Meanwhile, my boyfriend got this email from the president of his university. pic.twitter.com/ikD0YIK4Oy
— Ty (@TylerMarieJones) October 3, 2017
The students also used their voices to come together in a vigil, turning pain into action and channeling their grief into unity.
This never gets easier. We only hope that as time goes on that something will change that can make these incidents fewer and fewer so that nobody has to feel as though their grief is debilitating or they are unable to attend class without due sympathy and understanding.