Canada, We’re Thinking of You

In case you don’t know, our news channels (and Twitter and everywhere else) are all focused on the shootings that took place today. I just saw the picture of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, the soldier killed while guarding the National War Memorial in Ottawa. Oh man. Heart breaking. Now I’m reading that this is the second attack on soldiers in the past few days. Why Canada, for the love of God. What countries has Canada invaded?? Fucking insane people. This guy?? This guy was your enemy??

Cpl. Nathan Cirillo

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

5 thoughts on “Canada, We’re Thinking of You

  1. As I write this, not much has been said yet about the gunman and his motives. But recently, there have been threats against Canada because we are participating in the coalition against ISIS. A day or two ago, a Canadian-born convert to Islam ran his car into a couple of Canadian Forces members in Quebec, killing one. The gunman today was reportedly also Canadian-born and a convert to Islam.
    I work a couple of miles from Parliament Hill but even we were in lockdown for a while today. Scary to think about the next misguided person who thinks doing this kind of Lone Wolf terrorist attack is a good idea. It can happen anywhere, anytime.

  2. For us, I think lockdown was just under the direction of our manager ( I started a new job at the beginning of August at a funeral home). As for buildings closer to Parliament Hill, there were probably enough police on the streets to tell people to get back in their buildings if they tried to venture out. Reports on the radio were telling people to stay away from windows & to stay off rooftops (people who might have been trying to get a bird’s eye view of what was going on).
    It is so strange to see all the reports & pictures of Ottawa on CNN. We’re not used to being the centre of attention.
    With any luck, tomorrow will be a better day here. I don’t think they’ve been able to definitively say that the gunman was acting alone. Earlier today, I heard that members of our Armed Forces were being told not to wear their uniforms in public. A very sad day for them all.

  3. When it first happened, there were rumours that there may be multiple shooters. That’s why they asked people to stay indoors. No one in and no one out.

    I don’t consider it was a “terrorist” attack because in both cases, it was a person acting alone. They may have been political acts (as in public actions) but as someone said on Facebook, maybe this will be fuel for a better dialogue on mental health issues. Both of the attackers had clearly lost perspective.

    I hope cooler heads will prevail and they don’t turn the Parliamentary precinct into an armed camp. Anyway, you can’t really guard against a lone gunman, the way you can against a coordinated attack.

    I thought the police conducted themselves well. No one was shot who wasn’t supposed to be and innocent people were not arrested or detained.

    I lived for a year in London UK when the IRA set off a few bombs (1995-6) and people were more alert but they also looked out for each other, so that was good. It is the randomness of the killing that is the difficult thing to cope with.

  4. Like many other people, I’ve always wondered why things like this don’t happen more often. I really hope we’ve entered a new era of things like this.

    PS: So many place is NYC have aspects of an armed camp. I guess I’m used to it, but it doesn’t really get in the way of anything in the end. It can be a minor inconvenience, at most.

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