Monday, January 2, 2012

ENOUGH by Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly

On January 8, 2011 Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot at a strip shopping mall on the corner of Ina and Oracle, about two miles from where I was living at the time.  I'd shopped at the Safeway store there only a week prior, and so it was a double shock when six people were killed by a lone gunman (and thirteen wounded), placing Tucson in world headlines.  Ironically, among Giffords legislative efforts were bills related to mental health, and she was named Legislator of the Year by the Mental Health Association of Arizona in 2004.  The shooter was the mentally disturbed conspiracy theorist Jared Lee Loughner, a high school dropout who abused drugs and alcohol, and targeted Giffords after his 2007 question to her, "What is government if words have no meaning?" was not answered to his satisfaction.  He bought his ammunition from Wal Mart, similar to the bomber and conspiracy nut in my own first novel.  Obama spoke movingly at the University of Arizona following the shooting last year, in attendance with Gabrielle's husband Mark Kelly, an astronaut.  Area TV stations are planning a remembrance on January 8.  The audiobook biography of Gabrielle's (and Mark's) life is GABBY--A Story of Courage and Hope.  Mark reads the book himself, along with Jeffrey Zaslow, and there is a final chapter read by Gabrielle herself that everyone should hear.
Her new book on gun violence is ENOUGH.

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