Editor’s note: This story contains details of a mass casualty event and gun violence.
Following the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday, an outpouring of messages of condolence and cause for gun law reform poured into the sports world. On Wednesday, ESPN presenter Elle Duncan shared a poignant message during her sports center aired, urging viewers not to become numb in the face of tragedy.
“You heard Steve Kerr, and he’s right: don’t be numb. Look at them,” Duncan said, pointing to a screen displaying photos of some of the victims. “We owe it to those parents who are having funerals instead of camp times today. We owe it to the matriarchs who won’t be having graduation parties this weekend, like some of you. We owe it to the church which has one less parishioner. A society that makes willingness to deal with assault a job requirement for a fourth-grade teacher, who, by the way, makes $30,000 a year.
Duncan began his post by noting how much easier it is to distract from the difficulty of dealing with what happened. She said she dropped her 4-year-old at school and sang Elmo songs in the car to “distract from the feeling of dread”.
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“We put our children to bed at night, and expect them to arrive in the morning under our protection and love,” Duncan said. “Only to send them into a reality where it’s enough to hope they’re faster to hiding than the other kids at school.”
The suspected shooter, an 18-year-old man, entered the school with a handgun and killed possibly 19 children and two adults. Duncan concluded her message by showing the faces of the victims on a monitor beside her, begging viewers to acknowledge their presence.
“If we do nothing else to protect the innocence of the reality we have created for them, then we owe them, at the very least, respect for recognition, however disruptive it may be to our peace of mind. spirit,” Duncan said. he said, holding back his tears. “So please, I beg you – and I mean it – look at them. And then look at everyone in the room with you and imagine that those are their faces on that screen.