Friday, January 14, 2011

I didn’t think that I had any personal connection to the tragedy in Tucson until I checked into one of my favorite sites,

I didn’t think that I had any personal connection to the tragedy in Tucson until I checked into one of my favorite sites, and was astonished to read “BlogHer Ashleigh Burroughs One of 19 Shot Alongside Rep. Gabrielle Giffords”

One of my favorite bloggers was among the seriously wounded. Although I have never met Ashleigh in person, I feel like I know her from her wonderful blog posts and the thoughtful comments she makes on my blog. Ashleigh blogs at The Burrow

To get a sense of Ashleigh and her writing, read her wonderful post
Does It Have to Be Reciprocated to Be Love?
syndicated on

If you go to Ashleigh’s site you will read an update from her daughter:
As most of you probably know by now, my mom attended the Congress on your Corner event yesterday at her local Safeway. Just as she reached the front of the line to shake Ms. Gifford's hand a gunman appeared and began shooting with an automatic weapon. My mom was shot three times.

That's a sentence I never thought I'd have to type.

Right this very minute my mom is in the ICU with her leg in a traction. She suffered a wound to her left chest, one to her abdomen, and a third to her right hip. She is incredibly lucky that none of her organs were hit, even though one of the bullet's entry wounds was in her abdomen. She has been taken care of by some fantastic and proficient doctors and nurses, and a wonderful social work team.

My mom is the toughest broad I've ever met. She is awake and talking and cracking wise and we can all rest assured that the woman we love is still here, kicking major ass.

To all of you who have reached out already: I love you. Your thoughts have honestly been felt even if they were from many states away. The amount of love we are receiving is staggering, and we are incredibly thankful for all of you. Please continue to send out your best "healing vibes" (as we like to call them) and "special strength vibes" for the moments when we will be reaching in to our reserve tanks.

Today I received the following message from the editors at

And, finally, we’d like to ask for your help with something we feel is incredibly important. The shootings in Arizona profoundly affected us, to an even greater degree when we learned that one of our community members was shot . We’ve been considering the way we act and how we choose our words and what messages we may be unintentionally sending. We’re wondering if you are doing the same, so we’ve set up a survey that we hope you’ll take .

We’d really like to hear from you (the survey is anonymous, of course) and your readers, if you feel like this is an appropriate thing to ask of them. Please note that the survey does specifically address the political angle and aspect of this incident, and if you are directing your readers there, you might want to let them know that. Next week we will host a second survey about some other aspects of the shootings. We will share the results on, and would greatly welcome your participation in these discussions as we try to find some sort of understanding and peace.

Here is the direct link to the survey

The editors at have been trying very hard to encourage a civil debate. Please support them by participating in this short survey.

Thanks so much,


  1. I read the full BlogHer survey, Karen, and didn't end up taking it because (regrettably) I thought it was fatuous. The issue of civility in political discourse will get some endorsement acutely and then in a few months will have disappeared, I'm unhappily guessing. Your comments on the BlogHer site are much more on point than any of the survey questions: access to mental health services and access to weapons are the key issues in the foreground, with violent blather the background to this horror show. Even though in many states there are substantial legal barriers to involuntary commitment, "normalizing" mental health services, and paying for them equitably (which is seldom the case now in most plans, private or public) might go some way toward destigmatizing mental illness (a process I fear will be more difficult than achieving respectful political discussion). Thanks for your posting, and yes, hopeful thoughts for Ashleigh and all of the injured.

  2. I hope one by-product of this horror will be that the Republicans will not be able to weaken the mental health care provisions in the new health care law.

  3. Ashleigh is recovering! There is a new post from her at

  4. She's back, she's back, she's back!

    I haven't been able to think straight since Saturday afternoon, when, as soon as the news broke, my intuition told me she'd been there. I went crazy pulling up maps on Google Earth and trying to get them to layer...Safeways in Tucson, A/B's house, the hospital. Before the victims were named, I was frantically trying to reach her.

    It has been a horrible week, but, seeing Ashleigh posting today has caused something inside to relax a little. Now, bring on the rehab cheerleaders, for she'll really need us for that part, too.