?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Journal of No. 118


April 18th, 2007

Hypocritical Perspective @ 07:19 am

Tags: ,

I have no desire to take any importance away from the horrible crime at Virginia Tech, or from the pain of the community and the families, or from the memories of the slain (which include some friends-of-friends-of-friends, such as the son of SF writer Michael Bishop).
But as the media now wallow in encomia of the fallen and bloggers compile lists of their myspace pages, I just feel the need to mention that America has suffered one hundred VT massacres in Iraq. Roughly two massacres a month for the past four years.
Apart from a slideshow of the names of the week's fallen that they flash on "This Week" on Sunday morning (that I stare at morosely), they get next to no acknowledgement. Sure, the soldiers volunteered for a dangerous job, but that makes them no less innocent or make it less regrettable that their lives were cut short.
But I'm still just going to play games and drink a lot of beer on Memorial Day.
 
Share  |  Flag |

Comments

 
[User Picture Icon]
From:sjo
Date:April 18th, 2007 03:17 pm (UTC)

My two cents

(Link)
IIRC, about 80 people die of gunshot wounds every day in the United States. About 50 of those are self-inflicted. If the Virginia Tech massacre was such a tragedy -- and it is sad indeed -- isn't it more of a disgrace that we haven't readily available mental health care to prevent those 50 daily deaths?
[User Picture Icon]
From:rsheslin
Date:April 18th, 2007 03:55 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I'll be honest: the cynical side of me was tracking the VA Tech headlines and thinking, "Gee. Israel goes through this on a regular basis. And that's not even looking at places like Darfur or Somalia."

Sometimes, the ego/ethnocentrism of Americans really pisses me off.
[User Picture Icon]
From:edgyspice
Date:April 18th, 2007 05:10 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Great post. I've spent the last couple of days thinking, "Yes, this is extremely tragic, but there are extreme tragedies going on all over the world right now." =/
[User Picture Icon]
From:popepat
Date:April 18th, 2007 05:19 pm (UTC)
(Link)
The one big difference I can see is that handgun control will not likely to assuage the Iraq deathtoll. Hopefully, stricter gun laws will be the sole benefit of this tragedy, if I dare say such a thing.
[User Picture Icon]
From:ladyeuthanasia
Date:April 18th, 2007 09:06 pm (UTC)
(Link)

Um.

Yes. BUT. We need to mourn every death. And it's natural to mourn people we know, as well as those who did not sign up for combat. We're mourning at our house because language classes (and it was language classes this psycho-fuck hit) are what we're hoping will help bridge the gap someday to prevent another Iraq. Breaking down language barriers are key. The loss, therefore, transcends the mere number of 30. It represents a hit to future hope.

And I'm afraid I've gotta call bullshit on the bit about there being no difference between mourning people who volunteer for death and those who don't. There is, too, a significant difference in how we mourn and process the loss when it's a job hazard. They and society begin to make the separation when they sign up. I'm not saying those lives are worth less or that they're wasted any more, but they were expecting to face death while a student in a classroom studying French did not sign up for that same job.

From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 20th, 2007 02:04 am (UTC)
(Link)
I mourn more for those who signed up, not for death, but to serve our country, to sacrifice themselves for you and me. I feel their death is all the more tragic because I don't think they're dying for a good cause. I don't feel particular mourning for those who die random deaths. Those at VT are no more special than those who die because of car accidents or plane crashes. Shit happens, and nothing we can do will prevent another nutball from repeating what happened at VT. (We could stop those kids from dying in Iraq in a second, though.)

I'm also calling BS on 'it was language classes [he] hit'. First a dorm room. Then Advanced Hydrology. Then German. Then French. Then Aeronautics Engineering.
[User Picture Icon]
From:ladyeuthanasia
Date:April 20th, 2007 07:17 am (UTC)
(Link)

I don't normally answer anonymous comments, but I'll say this -- my mistake about the order of classes. We're here on the border of France, Switzerland and Italy right now where we're getting limited Internet. Before we left home, we heard from our friend who teaches in VA Tech in the language building that was hit. This is the information we had at the time. So, it's not BS. It's just misinformation. I think it's more BS not to identify yourself when calling BS, though. Mike's a friend who I respect highly. I would never dream of debating with him or calling him on an issue -- or anyone else -- on something without identifying myself.
[User Picture Icon]
From:essentialsaltes
Date:April 20th, 2007 01:47 pm (UTC)
(Link)
For reference, the anonymous poster was Becca.
[User Picture Icon]
From:ladyeuthanasia
Date:April 20th, 2007 04:09 pm (UTC)
(Link)

Argh. Becca, why didn't you sign in?

Journal of No. 118