Friday, June 19, 2015
try a little tenderness
"I am in awe of the forgiveness given freely by relatives of the victims. Juxtaposed against acts of retribution in the Middle East, it is a clear reminder that grace is the cornerstone of civilization."
> Reader Comment, the New York Times, Charleston story
After reading that Charleston's shooter had in previous months seemed to be "casing" a local mall there (questioning store workers about what time they closed, what time do they go home, being weird, etc.) I had the sense that maybe what this person wanted was to
That maybe racist stuff wasn't part of it. He just wanted to be one of those "shooting" people, and be on the news.
The mall didn't work out because the mall security banned him from the mall...then he chose the historic church as a target.
I thought, "Just somebody's dumb kid who wanted to 'be somebody' -- to 'identify' -- to be part of something negative (mistaking negativity for power), a group, or an attitude -- wanting to inhabit a role..."
Another NYTimes Commenter pointed out that in states where the legislature has legalized open carry in public, at church, at picnics, at bars, etc., they have not voted to legalize open carry in the statehouse.
It would seem kind of self evident that these children (21 years old, ok, but that's a recalcitrant child not a grown-up...) are copying each other. He sees it on the news and says to himself, I want to do that.
In reading about this Charleston tragedy, I learned something I didn't know before -- there's an organization called the Southern Poverty Law Center that keeps track of "hate groups" -- they show a map of the U.S. and in each state you see a number -- and that's how many hate groups exist there.
South Carolina has 19. Ohio has 27 (WTH). Pennsylvania has 38; New York, 44; Georgia, 28; West Virginia, 9; Virginia, 27; Minnesota, 8. Iowa has two hate groups. North Dakota also has 2. South Dakota has 4. Wyoming has 1. (a hate shortage?) Florida has 50; California, 57; Texas 36; New Jersey, 40....
South Carolina's governor underwhelms, with her camera-aimed emotional babbling. Shallow thinking.
With some of these elected officials, they don't really seem like leaders, themselves, they seem more like someone is "scripting" them.
The best people are cats and dogs.