This story is getting a lot of attention today. Everybody's asking, "Aren't the lives of those children worth more than 11million divided 21 ways?" I'm not asking that. Instead, I'm asking, why in the world do the taxpayers of Virginia owe these families anything at all?
ROANOKE, Va. - Most families of victims of the Virginia Tech shootings have agreed to an $11 million state settlement to compensate families who lost loved ones, pay survivors' medical costs and avoid a court battle over whether anyone besides the gunman was to blame.
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine said Thursday a "substantial majority" of families of victims of the Virginia Tech shootings agreed to the settlement.
Peter Grenier and Douglas Fierberg, who represent 21 families, said the settlement was worth more than $11 million, but neither they nor the governor would discuss its terms until final papers are drawn in a few days.
Grenier and Fierberg said seriously injured victims "will be well compensated and have their health care needs taken care of forever," and that families who lost loved ones would be "similarly compensated and cared for."
So, by virtue of the fact that they suffered a very public loss, they have a right to seize some of their fellow tax-payers' earnings? Call me a thoughtless ass if you want but, if something bad happens to a member of my family, do I get to extort fabulous cash and prizes from the taxpayers of my state as obscene compensation for my loss? What burden of responsibility to the taxpayers of Virginia have, that they must provide lifelong health-care? Do these families not have life insurance policies on their kids? Why are the taxpayers of Virginia on the hook for a shooting in a gun-free zone? For that matter, why were the American taxpayers on the hook for compensation($7billion) to the 9/11 families or Katrina families? Why are they owed more than what they provided for themselves with life insurance?
I'm sorry, these lawyers have convinced these families(for a handsome 30% fee no doubt) to extort money from their fellow taxpayers while everybody still feels sorry for them. It's a shakedown operation plain and simple. You either pay us now to go away, or pay us later when we drag weeping parents in front of a jury and blame VaTech, the state, and anybody else with lots of cash on hand for their grief. And the disappointing thing is that I'll bet not one family member stood up and said, wait a minute, this isn't right. They probably genuinely believe the tax-payers owe them something.
What a perverse, distorted world in which one person believes he has the right to the fruits of the labor of another person simply because something bad happend to him.