EDITORIAL – Terrorism is getting closer and closer to home


An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

WITH EVERY passing day, terrorism and mass killings seem to be getting closer to home.

The horrible mass shooting in Las Vegas — a short plane ride away in a place where many of us vacation — is the latest example.

No longer are these things something we read and hear about happening only in Europe or the United States, or even eastern Canada.

Unlike the Las Vegas shooting, the Edmonton attack a couple of days before involved no arsenal of firearms, and there’s no reason to think it couldn’t happen right here at home.

In Edmonton, a man drove a car into a police officer, then jumped out and stabbed him before running away.

Later, a man believed to be the same guy was arrested after driving a van into several pedestrians.

There have been the necessary declarations from politicians that we shall not be broken, that we are resilient, that hatred and terrorism will not prevail. And, of course, thoughts and prayers go out.

Those things are having to be said much too often.

Let’s face it, we’re afraid. And what is particularly frightening is that the attackers no longer even have to figure out how to make a bomb. They don’t need secret cells of plotters and they certainly don’t need sophisticated weaponry.

Knives or rented vehicles are common weapons of choice.

Any lone wolf whose values have been warped by the demented logic of the extremists can get in a car or truck and drive down a busy street, taking innocent lives.

And we’d be absolutely foolish to think it could never happen here.

Being afraid and living in fear are two different things, and we can’t, of course, live in fear. “Giving in” is not an option.

But it’s something our own police and emergency services have, without doubt, thought much about. And we should, too.

Stay safe. I’m the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear twice daily Mondays through Fridays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on and CFJC Today. Contact him at

About Mel Rothenburger (6241 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

8 Comments on EDITORIAL – Terrorism is getting closer and closer to home

  1. Dorance Fleming // October 4, 2017 at 8:58 AM // Reply

    This guy In Edmonton was ordered deported in Sep. 2016. In Jan. 2017 he never showed and we see the results. If you order deportation follow through with it immediately. This attack can be partially blamed on our Justice and Immigration systems and the total lack of oversight because OH,OH, wait we don’t want to offend anybody’s Charter Rights no matter what the cost.

  2. This man had 64 years of suppressed rage brewing and brewing, absolutely everybody lied to this man, starting with his Mother and continuing throughout his entire life, I realize this isn’t an excuse however it is a causation.

  3. I think it would be dangerous to define ‘terrorism’ as loosely as you have, because motivations count for plenty. Add to that, ‘means’ and ‘opportunity’. Motivations are what need to be addressed if you want to make the world a safer place, because without them, means and opportunity are no longer relevant. But with them, controlling the ‘means’ becomes much more important.

    I could turn out to be wrong, but I very much doubt the Vegas guy was religiously motivated. I doubt he was politically motivated. We might learn more as the investigation goes on, but sometimes people are just crazy. He has some sort of motivation, and clearly, the means.

    It occurred to me this morning that we used to see trucks with gun racks in the back window ‘back in the day’. I think they pretty much disappeared in the mid-70’s, because gun laws were starting to work to prevent stupid things from happening. I’m sure there was resistance (although I don’t remember any) and if we were the USA, the Second Amendment people would have started a shooting war over this, because clearly gun control was the start of a police state.

    Fast forward to the present and yes, there was a terror attack in Edmonton. But after Las Vegas, it won’t even last the news cycle. In Canada, we worked to prevent a gun problem before it really even began. The Americans, however, doubled down on their artillery and now see mass shootings, like Las Vegas, as ‘normal life’. If Sandy Hook couldn’t change things for them, I don’t think anything really could. No effective control on guns (the means) and – surprise, surprise – really bad things happen.

    As the world gets smaller, incidents like in Edmonton become reality even here in Canada. But we need to recognize that the society we’ve built in Canada seems more able to guard against radical actions than others… either because we make it more difficult to pull off these acts (limiting the means), or living here simply doesn’t stoke discontent the way it evidently does in other places (motivation). That doesn’t mean we should be content and feel that everything is just fine here, but we should recognize that we’re doing something right. Or doing something *more right* than other countries.

    Ironically, the US is now well on its way to becoming the police state their Second Amendment was supposed to guard against. Most are too blind to see it, but it’s certainly happening. If we want security, it’s probably safe to say… look at what the US is doing… and do the opposite.

  4. Psalm 23 verse 4

  5. Mass media, including films have for years glorified and gratuitously displayed and showcased violence.
    Our own western governments have consistently up-played violence – perhaps indirectly but nevertheless noticeable- via some of their foreign and even domestic policies…here is the result. Happy now?

  6. Stewart Duncan // October 3, 2017 at 5:07 AM // Reply

    Stay safe? How? With a Prime Minister who has opened our borders to jihadis, just how are we supposed to stay safe? Talk, talk, talk.

    • Precisely the wrongest attitude…opening up to the jihadists…as if!
      But we should look back at the Balfour declaration for some answers…

      • The Vegas shooter was not a jihadist. He was a nut job with enough artillery to level the whole hotel floor he was on. The borders weren’t opened up to him, he was born and raised inside them. We’d be foolish to think that can’t happen in Canada, although we’re better at gun control. It doesn’t matter where you come from , what you look like or what you believe in, people can change, be manipulated and/or act on some violent impulse at any given moment and cause harm to others. No point in labeling groups of people with Blanket statements. We can’t control everything but we should be grateful we have gun control to limit the means by which someone can cause harm.

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