176 children have been killed in Pakistan by US drones since Obama took the oath of office. Are those deaths in any way comparable to the ones at Sandy Hook? That's the question asked by Reason's Brian Doherty.
Sandy Hook and drone strikes share one similarity: mechanized killings. The differences, Doherty concedes, are important: one is fighting against terrorists targeting Americans. The other was just an exercise in horror.
But in the minds of anti-drone activists, Doherty writes, the death of children by drone strike is so tragic and unnecessary, it makes the deaths comparable to a gratuitous mass murder.
Drone technology has granted the military the ability to attack terrorists and al-Qaeda affiliates that it wouldn't have bothered with otherwise. But while the use of drones has made the killing of terror suspects easier, it has also made collateral damage, i.e. the killing of civilians including children, far more common.
Comparing the death of children in Sandy Hooks to those in Pakistan and beyond is clearly "politicizing the tragedy," as Doherty puts it; but that's also the point: to draw attention to a difficult issue at a moment of sensitivity.