On the blog of a friend of mine, she wrote about how the bombing at the Boston Marathon was no big. No she didn’t. She wrote that when placed in the perspective of the horrors we see every day, it is a reminder to be horrified, not something to be extra horrified about.
I agree with this perspective. Let me explain.
Yes, the bombing at the marathon was horrifying. That the death toll was relatively low (thank goodness) doesn’t make it less horrifying. Whether it’s been or will be labeled terrorism (politically motivated) or not, it was meant to make us feel less safe and to get us to stop doing the things we normally do. I don’t want to understate any of that.
I feel like the best way I can describe how I feel is by comparing it to Sandy Hook and proposed gun legislation. People were arguing that proposed legislation (whatever it may be) wouldn’t have prevented Sandy Hook, but I feel like, why should that be our only concern? The shooter at Sandy Hook got his weapons by killing his mother, who would have passed a background check. But why should this be the only thing that horrifies us? I’m not asking this to minimize the horrors at Sandy Hook. I’m asking this to remind us of how horrible every day is when we lose 3 people an hour to gun violence. Thus the death tally everyday is almost three times higher than one Sandy Hook massacre. But somehow, that they aren’t all killed at the same place, we’re ok with it. Or is it because they were children? Everyday, 8 kids under the age of 20 are killed by gun violence, thus we have a Sandy Hook massacre about twice a week. Are we truly only concerned when it’s a kindergarten class? One dead kindergartner here or there is ok?
If we are horrified only by Sandy Hook, then probably the only way we can prevent it is by locking down our schools or home schooling our children. But if Sandy Hook is a reminder that we see too much gun violence, then background checks and bans on certain weapons and magazine sizes would be effective.
Also with the bombing on Monday. If we are only horrified by the bombing at the marathon, then we will spend our lives either being horrified or avoiding large events. But if it is a reminder of the things we should be horrified by, maybe there are other ways to make us a safe society.