A Sputnik Moment?

Watching the President tonight in Newtown, I suddenly found myself thinking of when the Russians launched Sputnik in October 1957.  At first I thought maybe that was because it happened when I was the age of the children killed at Sandy Hook, and I was thinking back to being 6.  But then I realized that it was because Sputnik was a huge wake-up call for the U. S., and tonight I felt that things are finally going to change.

My sense at the time of the Gabby Giffords’ shooting in Tucson was a pervasive feeling of sorrow and “Shit happens.”  But with this shooting, I think there’s a pervasive feeling of shock and “Holy Shit.”