EDITORIAL: Technology couldn’t prevent what happened at Northern Illinois

(U-WIRE) It’s the scariest thing in the world to imagine.

No matter how much preparation, no matter how many prevention measures, nothing could have stopped what happened at Northern Illinois University on Thursday.

Around 3 p.m. a man entered a Northern Illinois lecture hall and opened fire on students and the professor, killing five and injuring 16 and then killing himself.

It happened in a blink of an eye. No text messages or e-mails could be sent to warn students in the classroom. No online alerts sent by the university’s administration could prevent those students’ deaths.

What makes the situation even scarier is that this could happen anywhere and at anytime.

All it took was one man to turn a day traditionally associated with love into a day of horror for the families who lost someone.

This is not the first time something like this has happened, and sadly it probably will not be the last. Less than a year ago, a man shot and killed 32 people at Virginia Tech. Earlier this week a woman killed two students and herself at a college in Louisiana.

However, Thursday’s shooting at Northern Illinois is a nightmare that has a more profound affect at Ball State University than other recent college shootings.

Ball State students turned on their televisions Thursday night, and no longer were they watching events unfold at a college in a different region of the United States and that has few connections to Ball State. Now Ball State students are viewing a horrifying event occur at school with similar enrollment, comparable campus size and monthly interaction with Ball State.

Northern Illinois is fewer than 300 miles from Muncie. The two universities are in the Mid-American Conference, and in November the athletics departments created a trophy-game with the hope of establishing a stronger football rivalry between the two schools.

DeKalb, Ill., is a city in which almost every Ball State sports team plays each season. It’s a place Ball State students and alumni have visited to see friends or watch sporting events. It’s a city the Cardinals’ gymnastics team visited for a meet less than two weeks ago.

It’s impossible to fully understand and contemplate why and how this disaster happened in Northern Illinois.

There is no way to prevent something like this from happening again. Ball State students can only hope it never happens at Ball State.

Click Here for more stories about the NIU shooting spree.

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