Safety in numbers

Smitha Gundavajhala

Wednesday morning, Cupertino was catapulted into the headlines. The Lehigh Cement Factory shooting jolted citizens out of their shells of security. Everyone had one question on their minds.What happened to our utopia?

We have always joked around about the “Cupertino Bubble,” how this force field of sorts keeps all harm away from the borders of our little city. But when tragedy strikes and the bubble pops, the only thing on our minds is how safe Cupertino isn’t.

A family, which chose to remain unidentified, of one of the wounded workers of Lehigh Cement factory speaks to reporters on the intersection of Foothill Blvd. and Stevens Creek Blvd. at approximately 8 a.m. In difficult times like this, it is especially important that members of the community are there for one another. Photo by Kevin Tsukii.

But that’s not true—Cupertino is making a valiant effort to keep us all safe.

Many things will probably be compromised by this incident: our image as the “Cupertino Bubble,” our curfews, and possibly even property values. One thing that will not be compromised, however, is our safety. Our safety cannot be defined by the safety we feel — that is far too subjective and difficult to ascertain. Our safety cannot be measured by our crime rate, because different cities follow different courses of action in dealing with crime that also factor into our working definition of safety.

Safety is when, even under great duress, the city, the police force and all those affected keep a strong front. Safety is the rallying of the community to protect its citizens and to solve the problem.

Cupertino did exactly that.

We are blessed to have such a tightly knit community, both outside of and at MVHS. Throughout the day, people let their friends and family know to stay home, and have been sources of continual support both for victims of the crime and all those shocked by this sudden disturbance to the routine of our lives. It’s not the circumstances in which we wanted to be bonded, but  if we can go forth with this newfound unity and trust in each other, we will all be safe.

By 7:37 a.m., many students had received three different calls from the FUHSD District Office telling them not to go to school. When they logged in to Gmail, most statuses, in effect, read: “No school today” or “Cupertino, be safe.” Even with a gunman causing havoc, the Cupertino community is there to keep us safe.

As long as we have each other’s backs, it is one person against all of us. And all of us, together, are a force to be reckoned with.

Stay together, Cupertino. Stay strong, and stay safe.