Maybe by the time this article hits the paper, the world has made sense of another tragic event. There’s a small outside chance that we may even have the suspect in custody and we can all go about our business. Or perhaps not.
As Monday rolled around it was just another one of those passage-of-spring events, the Boston Marathon. And it was a brilliant day, the sun was out and the universe seemed to be cooperating, but then a couple of bombs went off, 100 yards apart. It would seem to be very calculated and very contrived and deliberate. Three people dead (one an 8-year-old child) and dozens more injured, on Patriot’s Day, a day that is supposed to celebrate freedom.
Once again we find ourselves enmeshed in another senseless act of violence. I wondered and yes, even panicked, when it happened; was it terrorists? I wanted it to be a pipeline explosion or a transformer, something that would ease the burden that would take away from the fact that humans can’t stop targeting humans. The answer is yes, it was an act of terrorism; it doesn’t matter if the person responsible was from Al Qaeda or Albany -- this was a cowardly act of terrorism. An 8-year-old child died shortly after hugging his father who had just crossed the finish line. He was just standing there one minute and the next minute he was gone, like the life he was going to lead meant nothing.
What happened to respect for human life? What happened to the presence of life being a meaningful thing on this planet? Something so dear that taking it away is almost unimaginable. Have we progressed beyond that point? Are there really such dark marks on humanity that are so desensitized that bombing innocent people during a running event seems like the thing to do?
Honestly the very thought that there are people out there that can hatch these plans and then execute them puzzles me to no end. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again -- reasonable people often try to inject reason into unreasonable situations; this is one of those situations, and it’s very unreasonable.
But when tragedy strikes, the one thing this nation and its people do is step up. Locally, when Irene devastated our area, we banded together and pulled each other through. When the Newtown school shooting happened, we, as a nation, once again banded together and pulled each other through. It’s exhausting but we are strong and we have tons of resolve and we will once again pull ourselves through.
There’s a comedian Patton Oswald (he played the geeky cousin on King of Queens) ... he’s a dark comedy kind of guy and often talks about very real and sometimes uncomfortable subject matter. But he posted something on his Facebook page that I thought was brilliant: "This is a giant planet and we’re lucky to live on it but there are prices and penalties incurred for the daily miracle of existence. One of them is, every once in a while, the wiring of a tiny sliver of the species gets snarled and they’re pointed towards darkness.
"But the vast majority stands against that darkness and, like white blood cells attacking a virus, they dilute and weaken and eventually wash away the evil doers and, more importantly, the damage they wreak. This is beyond religion or creed or nation. We would not be here if humanity were inherently evil. We’d have eaten ourselves alive long ago.
"So when you spot violence, or bigotry, or intolerance or fear or just garden-variety misogyny, hatred or ignorance, just look it in the eye and think, ‘The good outnumber you, and we always will.’"
He’s 100 percent correct and even though it comes from an unlikely source I felt strongly about passing it along. Because we should never accept, make sense of or be at peace with this kind of behavior. We should always remember that good does outnumber evil and it always will. That’s the take away, what we should remember during the dark times. But you can always pause for a moment and ask, What the Hell is up with that?