Article by Parker Jones
Valentine's Day, for most people, brings to mind candy hearts, the sweet smell of roses drifting over the air, glitter hearts and the rich taste of chocolate. It is meant as a day to celebrate love and friendship.
However, one year ago a horrifying event shattered the peace of Valentine's Day. In Parkland, Florida, someone entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and opened fire, killing seventeen people.
This event sparked sorrow across the nation, and then anger, two emotions not usually associated with such a romantic holiday. Of course everyone was shocked, nobody expects such a tragedy to happen. Nobody expects seventeen people to die and in such a violent way. This year, many people will celebrate Valentine's Day with an extra weight in their hearts and sorrow in their minds. Lives have been changed by this tragedy, people have been lost, and remembering that such pain originated only one year ago stings.
So this Valentine's Day, do celebrate love, it is important now as it has always been. Just remember the many families that have an empty space where someone once was, and appreciate the loved ones still in your life.
Photograph by Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images via The Guardian