Lives lost are lives lost, regardless of the side.

I've been covering the Virginia Tech massacre from last week off and on for a while - just the highlights because things are at the point where just about everyone is saying more or less the same thing, just with slightly different words. Something jumped out at me last night before I went to bed, though: Controversy has been stirred up at VT because student Katelynn Johnson placed a thirty-third stone in the memorial, for shooter Seung-Hui Cho. All hell broke loose as a result, and understandably so, but Johnson was undeterred; in a letter to the school newspaper, she stated "We did not lose only 32 students and faculty members that day; we lost 33 lives."

She's right. Regardless of what Cho did, he was a living being. A person yoked with problems worse than most who lost the battle with himself and did something horrible. Compassion does not mean supporting or condoning someone or their actions.