Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

Tibi gratias agimus quod nihil fumas.

It says "...freedom of...", not "...freedom from...".

Nolite te bastardes carburundorum!

"It's amazing to me how many people think that voting to have the government give poor people money is compassion. Helping poor and suffering people is compassion. Voting for our government to use guns to give money to help poor and suffering people is immoral self-righteous bullying laziness. People need to be fed, medicated, educated, clothed, and sheltered, and if we're compassionate we'll help them, but you get no moral credit for forcing other people to do what you think is right. There is great joy in helping people, but no joy in doing it at gunpoint." - Penn Jillette

Friday, February 15, 2008

Oh, no...please, not again...

I had a cute post ready to go for this morning, but...maybe later. I don't feel like being a bubble-head right now.

I don't usually watch or read much news - it hurts and I'm not a glutton for punishment.

Yesterday, when many people were celebrating love - parents, kids, romantics, spouses, friends - one young man was finding a settling-place at the bottom of his existence. Or perhaps he found it days, weeks, months ago and yesterday was simply the day to express himself with violence.

He opened fire in a crowded lecture hall, snapping short Fate's threads for seven people, himself one of them.

Sixteen more will view Valentine's Day in a new light for the rest of their lives, scarred in flesh and spirit. If they find themselves dreading the day, they'll be among the small few who have reason not to join in the spirit of hearts and chocolates. I wouldn't blame them.

Perhaps, though, they'll enjoy it all the more for having come close to meeting their maker. Perhaps their experience will lend a certain piquancy to their lives and loves.

The boy who instigated this destruction turned on himself, saving police the trouble, saving the people of his community the expense of trial, incarceration, care. Leaving us, so far without answers.

Please, for the love of all that's holy, if this child left a video tape, a manifesto, a website or some other communique...please don't play it! NBC? Are you listening? Don't play it! Ever. Something that horrible belongs to its maker, should be viewed by authorities and perhaps...perhaps if they ask to see it, the families of the victims so they might garner some understanding. But me? And everyone else not directly involved? We don't have a need to see it, and frankly, we don't have a right.

Respect these bright futures brought low, grown dim and then dark - don't give the shooter his fifteen minutes. He doesn't deserve the glory-after-death that the Virginia Tech shooter got (I refuse to even type his name. He doesn't deserve it.). He deserves compassion for the suffering he must have felt, for whatever sickness, evil, anger or pain drove him to shout his misery so loud and with such violence, but not fame or infamy (they're so difficult to distinguish, lately).

Show, rather, something of those wounded and killed. Show something of who they are or were, of what they love, what they want or wanted to be. Show how they rally from this, how they rise from it and walk on through life, scarred but triumphant. Show how they live, lived. Leave their families alone, let them find understanding and peace without your blaring, blazing, intrusive presence.

I know it's a stretch, but give them a little dignity.

Now please excuse me while I go light a candle and mourn - no, I don't know any of these kids, but every time something like this happens, I hurt. These are my children, my brothers and sisters, my fellow sojourners through life, and just because I haven't met them doesn't mean their loss doesn't sting. The day I stop hurting over these horrors is the day I leave the last of my humanity behind for something worse.

1 comment:

foolery said...

And to this most eloquent essay may I add:

Please, journalists and pseudo-journalists, show us NONE of the victims. It adds nothing to our understanding, it adds nothing to the grieving process (I'm guessing), and if it's intended to add to your bottom lines, then it is tainted.

And it DOES add to the circus atmosphere that is so tantalizing to the shooters just lining up for the next performance.

Thanks, Kyddryn.