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Heartsick and Angry
June 22, 2015
I had something else in mind for this week’s post, but I am too sick at heart to offer it. My country has wounded herself again and all we seem to able to do about it is run around pointing fingers, touting fear and raising a vicious kind of propaganda that would make Josef Goebbels envious.
It sickens and saddens me to know that in the 21st century, a young man has been so meticulously and diligently taught to blame other people for the ills in his life; so meticulously and diligently taught that murdering these people who happen to have a different skin color could be his only remedy. He could not have been born that way; no human child is. But somewhere, somehow he heard, learned and ingested this venomous lie. He let it eat at his soul. And then he murdered.
I recognize my own biases: I am Midwestern born and raised. I am a proud American and a proud Jew. I also acknowledge I have benefitted from what has been labeled, “White Privilege.” But I must say it mystifies me how this young man imagined his wrongs could be righted or how his life could be improved through killing nine people in a place of Christian worship. Self-defense of his race won’t cut it. And if his wish was to go into history as a hero, perhaps we should all recall that history has not been kind to self-appointed executioners and vigilantes. Not to mention his timing was poor. If the murder of defenseless Christians in a church was an act he wished to be remembered for, with all the mass shootings we’ve suffered over these past years, his name will likely not be remembered at all. To which I say, “Amen.” Like the others shooters from Sandy Hook, Aurora, Fort Hood, Columbine and on and on, such names deserve no remembering.
Finally, it sickens and infuriates me to watch the “spin” frenzy that never allows the families to mourn, let alone allowing the rest of us time to reflect and perhaps decide for ourselves. Responses fly like irritants in the wind with the hopes that someone somewhere may gain an advantage over the rest of us living in terror of each other; our terror equaling their profits. The young man in custody for this murder has already bought their bill of goods.
I wrote a couple weeks ago that my writing is at heart a plea for tolerance. Consider this a renewal of the plea. If for no other reason, than for one of emotional economics. We the People of America are paying the price for the fear-mongering and it has already proven to be too high. Fingers on lips, people, and start listening! It is time we dropped the chest-thumping and moth-eaten platitudes and had a civil discussion about how we can and must live together.
Or we will surely become the youngest nation to die by suicide.