I woke up a little early for work on Sunday morning. So I decided to hop onto Facebook to waste a little time. It’s usually not a good idea, because I can get sucked into the wormhole of scrolling. But this time, it was even worse.
I was still reeling from the drama of the El Paso shooting and saw that there had been another one a few hours before, this time in Dayton, Ohio.
Now, I’m from Toledo. It’s about two hours north, on the Michigan-Ohio line. I always joke that I’m half Michigander, because my mom was born and raised in Michigan and Dad in Ohio. They used to play in the same cornfields as kids, but were in different states. We thought nothing of the closeness. But I digress a little bit.
I went into slight panic mode, only a little bit more than with your normal shooting news. (How awful that I can even say “your normal shooting news.”) See, I have friends and family who live in the Dayton area. I was flashing back to a couple of months ago when they were hit hard with tornadoes and I had to wait to hear from everyone. Here I was again praying that my loved ones were okay, while also feeling guilty and horrible for those who were not okay.
I cried all the way through my shower and made it into work. I only work for a couple of hours and then have the rest of the day off. I went to brunch and my friend who works behind the bar on Sundays asked me if I was okay. I told her what had happened and how I was still waiting to hear from one more person. I did finally hear from that last person and was breathing a little easier. But I could not stop reading the news update, trying to wrap my head around what had happened “back home.” (It’s close enough.)
Forward to Monday. I knew I needed to stay off of social media for sanity’s sake. But I also had some promotion I had to do for people, so I needed to be on both Facebook and Twitter.
First I saw that Trump said in his speech that he was sending his thoughts and prayers to the people of Toledo. Now, I am NOT a Trump fan and know how often he makes these dumbass mistakes. But it really pissed me off that he would confuse Dayton and Toledo. Again, they are about two hours apart, but at least he got the right state? What the hell?
So I’m already in a bad mood. A few minutes later, I saw that CNN had made similar mistakes in their reporting, also using Toledo, but then Cleveland. DIFFERENT CITIES, PEOPLE! All three are in totally different parts of the state. But again, at least they got the state right?
I even had a friend joke that he has lived in all three cities, and they really are pretty much the same city. But you know what I mean.
Fast forward until even later. This time I see that Joe Biden misspoke about both of the shootings. He said they were in Houston and Michigan. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Again, Houston, at least the right state, but I don’t think the people of El Paso were too amused. And Michigan? WRONG STATE! I know I joke about them being the same because of how close they are too each other, you know, up in Toledo where I grew up. (Hence the earlier comment about my parents.) And I’m even a fan of most Michigan sports, not Ohio-based sports.
Not to mention that Michigan is not a CITY it is a STATE and not the same state as where the shootings were. That’s about 2 1/2 hours away.
I can’t help it. I was just about raving angry by this point and was commenting on it on social media. I’m sorry, but I am offended, even though this is not my hometown. A massive tragedy and the bulk of you couldn’t get it right? Biden did at least correct himself pretty quickly after his gaffe. I’m assuming that CNN did the same. I highly doubt Trump did.
Most of my friends back home shared in my annoyance for sure. And then I had one person this morning try to tell me that we are all human and make mistakes. And I needed to focus my ranting on policy problems instead.
Nope, I’m going to be angry about this. It’s different than the policy stuff. And that’s a whole other argument I am not going to get into at this moment. But hopefully everyone has their cities correct now as we all focus on healing. And hopefully with the next one (because unfortunately, we all know there is going to be a next one), those big names won’t make these same kinds of mistakes. Not OK.