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Learning from tragedy
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A week ago, Newton County lost one of its young people in a gun accident. T.J. Dorsey was shot in the back by a friend when a gun he thought had the safety on fired.

 Thursday night the Newton High School class of 2009 hosted an impressive candlelight vigil at the school in memory of Dorsey.

 At the vigil Dorsey’s father Terry J. Sr. spoke to the students saying, "Carrying a gun does not make you a man. It makes you a punk because you have to hide behind a bullet. Playing with guns and being in gangs — that’s a punk game."

 We agree with this grieving father 100 percent.

 T.J.’s friend will have to forever live with the fact that he killed his buddy — someone, who by the turnout at Thursday’s vigil, obviously touched people with his wit and kindness.

 Parents, we urge you have a conversation with your children and teens about gun safety. Please, keep your guns properly locked away from young children and let your teens know they are not toys or status symbols. Tell them about T.J. and the loved ones he leaves behind.

 We’re not advocating tighter gun control policies in government, but guns are weapons designed for hunting or to scare, hurt or kill aggressors. They are a powerful example of the innovation of the human mind and need to be treated with reverence to the force they can display.