A sad, dangerous week in our recent history

This is just off the top of my head, but I recall:

Oklahoma City Bombing, April 19th, 1995

Columbine School Shooting, April 20th, 1999

I’m just saying.

Meanwhile a much more interesting and life-affirming story is that of Oprah’s response to Don Imus. I am not an Oprah-head by any means, but in the absence of Anna Nicole News last night at work, I caught a bit of this episode and it made me think a bit and that was unwelcome because I was busy at work and didn’t want to rant and rave and flood my workspace with all my radical feminist ideas. I did really love what the white lady, Lisa Wilson, said, though:

I’m a white, prudish suburban woman with the requisite huffy indignation for all things racist and sexist. Yet I watched Don Imus most mornings. It often made me squirm, but I could justify the puerile banter as being another part of urban culture that I just didn’t get. So I was ready to defend Mr. Imus because of the platform he provided for in-depth, high-caliber interviews.
When I saw the young women of Rutgers, I was shamed as I have never been shamed before. I suddenly saw my very real contribution to our racial divide. Indifference. I’d been willing to dismiss the denigration of African-Americans and women because it’s become common and because it suited me.
And I learned the true meaning of grace and courage from those young women.
Thank you all for showing me that I have much work to do.

You know, I have yet to even research his comments in context but thanks to a lovely sociology 101 class, I understand that race is a social construct and utterly useless for anything but physical descriptions. And then, it isn’t race we use, it is color. I plan to research the story a bit more. I tend to keep myself out of touch because, well, it is more peaceful that way.

At first when I heard about the VA tech shootings I was ashamed I hadn’t already heard about it on the news but then I realized that even though they can’t tell, I just wanted to give these ppl some privacy! No amount of my knowing about it is going to help. Yes, in the case of national tragedies, I do like to stay well-informed because the historian in me loves to be a primary source! But this is out of my jurisdiction. I think handguns are bad. He used something else I’m sure. I think shooting and killing is bad. I can’t really do much else. This week already has my heart in a knot evermore because of the Oklahoma City bombing.

I was 8 months pregnant when the Murrah Fed bldg came down and I was on bedrest and lying there watching days of searching followed by days of memorials while I was all safe on my couch. I vowed then to do what I could to banish hate–sort of a bargain with God. Over the last 12 years I have forgotten that vow numerous times but it is always there. Ever the pacifist–even Quaker-like at times–I gotta reaffirm this quest of mine and change some of my smallest behaviours just to make the world a more peaceful place. Be the change and all that. But this is a week of pilgrimage-like renewal for me every year and the VA Tech “rampage” just affirms that for me. My heart aches. But not in a way that gluing myself to CNN will help, this time.

A look at some Virginia Tech victims – Yahoo! News

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~ by merialiss on April 17, 2007.

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