Name the Maimed!

We all heard the news, haven’t we. Marathon bombs, Boston losing legs and lives. It had little to do with Shakespeare, but it was called a tragedy. And who said only good old Bill could create convincing drama? But who cares anyway? What does it matter who wrote it? Intentional fallacy. We have more pressing concerns than a dead and withered author.

For a nation that “refuses to be terrorized,” America is surprisingly obsessed with their terrorists. Remember when there was a ‘World Trade Center’ and a couple of maniacs crashed stolen planes into it? I may have been living under a rock, but I had never heard the name ‘Bin Laden’ before that day. How come I still cannot name a single person who was in that building, but I know exactly who was made responsible for their deaths? Even the man who famously made a recorded call while the building was collapsing – I don’t know anything else about him.

Is it an off-the-rails sense of justice that makes us think that we need to know everything about the murderers to avenge their unknown victims? Track, nay, hunt them down, sure. But don’t give them more of a voice than they already took without asking. Anarchy had its fifteen minutes of glory when a few unsuspecting runners lost their lives to it. Keep it that way. Fifteen minutes, not more. Don’t provide your redundant analyses and follow-ups that are nothing more than the media milking tragedy, and guidelines for aspiring terrorists. Say you’re on it and let us know when justice has been served. Meanwhile, let us turn to the victims.

People died that day, others’ lives were forever changed, possibly ruined. Dreams were shattered. We are talking about real people and real lives. Put yourself in that position. No more walking for you, my friend. Sure it’s easy to ask who did it and it may give you some fleeting sense of satisfaction to take an eye for an eye. It’s never going to bring them back – negative justice cannot truly right any wrongs. I suspect that, apart from the obsessive desire to know anything that scares us, it is our inherent reluctance to be compassionate towards our fellow human beings that makes us forget that none of the victims will profit even if the entire world simultaneously expressed their shared hatred towards the culprits. Luckily, there are still quite a few people out there who haven’t forgotten, and all credit should go to them for their support, be it physical, spiritual, or financial. A manhunt through Boston does not count as support, though, and we shouldn’t care about it as much as we seem to. It’s petty vengeance to no effect. I’m not saying that these abominable excuses for human beings should not be pursued incessantly, but do not honor the terrorists by calling their names, America. Pay your respects to the victims by calling theirs.

The inclined reader is likely to see more than 80 summers in their lifetime.

Krystle Campbell only saw 29.
Lingzi Lu only saw 23.
Martin William Richard only saw 8.
So many others will never see the world the same.

Unless you know these names by heart, don’t you dare naming their murderers ever again.

Sources:
Victims of the Marathon Bombings
Americans Refuse to be Terrorized
In Pursuit of the Terrorists
Life Expectancy, Switzerland

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2 responses to “Name the Maimed!

  1. This is very interesting. It correlates with one of the things I’ve been saying for quite some time in respect to the amok events in this past decade. Everyone knows the names of “nicknames” of people such as Breivik and “Newtown shooter” Adam Lanza – but very few can even name five of their victims. All too often does the media milk these events and hype up the tragedy that has occurred to something news-viewers might react to as they react to an action thriller – and I admit I’ve been caught in it’s ban as well. I have however noticed what the true danger of this process is. It is not that the victims will be forgotten – their families, friends and community will always remember them, while one way or another unaffected such you or I will forget with time -, but the real danger lies in putting the perpetrators on a pedestal. Somewhere out there in the world or even own country, there might be someone watching the news, believing to be challenged by society to out-do whatever horrific act is currently being publicized. Just look at last year: James Holmes started shooting about in a cinema at a midnight showing of the rated pg-13 film The Dark Knight Rises, Adam Lanza escalated to a children’s school. Who knows, this newly challenged person might try to out-do Lanza by targeting a daycare center or maternity ward.
    The Boston Bombers will definitely not be the last of their kind, whether their motives regard out-doing someone else, fighting the US foreign policy, or a white supremacist fighting his own government for a case long passed. But like in all these cases, remembering their victims should be more important than remembering their lives. Kudos to all of you out there who are spreading the message – and a special kudos to those who will continue going against the media’s drama-hungry exploitation of tragedy in this time of simultaneous historic under- and overdosing.

    • Thanks for your comments. It’s not like I’m pleading for the world to drown terrorism in silence, but you are perfectly right to assume that the current discourse might turn these people into role models. It should sicken us.

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