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The Las Vegas shooting: Attention where it's due

| Monday, Oct. 2, 2017, 9:45 a.m.
An injured person is tended to at the intersection of Tropicana Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard after a mass shooting at a country music festival Sunday night in Las Vegas. Police have confirmed that the suspect has been shot dead. The investigation is ongoing.
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An injured person is tended to at the intersection of Tropicana Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard after a mass shooting at a country music festival Sunday night in Las Vegas. Police have confirmed that the suspect has been shot dead. The investigation is ongoing.

Americans awoke to a nightmare Monday morning with news of a shooting spree at an outdoor country music festival on the Las Vegas Strip. A lone gunman Sunday night opened fire from a hotel balcony, killing at least 58 people and injuring hundreds in one of the most deadly mass shootings in U.S. history.

For now, let's turn our attention to the victims and their families in the aftermath of this profound tragedy.

The shooter, identified by police as Mesquite, Nev., resident Stephen Paddock, 64, reportedly took aim at the crowd at the Route 91 Harvest Festival from an upper floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino across Las Vegas Boulevard. The shooting went on for about 30 seconds before the music stopped, followed by another burst of gunfire, according to the Los Angeles Times. The gunman reportedly killed himself. Authorities and acquaintances said he had a history of gambling for high stakes.

And once again, a nation that has known all manner of terrorism, whether perpetuated by religious fanatics or deviants vengeful over their lives' circumstances, must come to terms with the onslaught. In time both sides in the gun debate will expound on Americans' Second Amendment rights. What's important now is to direct our nation's full attention and public resources to the victims and their families after this senseless, horrific act.

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