Didn't go anywhere or, really, do anything Monday. I'd feel guilty about that but it appears to have been the right thing to do.
Meanwhile, the world spun on: nitwit bombs in NYC and NJ, another nitwit with a knife in Minnesota (and shot dead by an off-duty policeman...who happened to be a firearms trainer), another hinky-looking* police shooting in Oklahoma, and so on and so forth.
It's a violent world. It has always been a violent world. There was a time when living in the right neighborhood, having enough money or having made a good choice of grandparents would insulate a person from most kinds of violence. Then we invented TV and the Internet, and put it right on your desktop; and on the desktop of violent people, some of whom go to the mall with a knife or a gun and ill intent, or make and plant bombs, or set an innocent man's gas station on fire with him inside, or shoot cops, or become bad cops.... You're not insulated. I'm not insulated. Lots of people never were.
And there's nothing much to be done, one on one, except to be decent and friendly to everyone you meet and always have a plan to protect yourself if they or circumstances turn ugly. Smile and memorize the exits.
Your ancestors knew this, in their bones and their scars and the churchyard graves. Now it's our turn. You can't hide from it; the government can't wrap you in cotton batting and make you safe by main force. It's on you and me.
* You have some different opinion? Great, there's all kinds of differing opinions and that's precisely why I call it "hinky." If eighty percent of the people who saw the recording said it was one way or another, it probably wouldn't have ended up on the news. It'd be fun to pretend there's no problem, and almost as much fun to claim to to know just what the root problem is, let alone how to fix it. The truth is, "it's complicated" is as close as anyone's got for a general answer. Erosion of mutual trust? That's just a symptom and a damned thin reed to hang so many deaths -- black, blue or just-wandered-through -- and so much rioting on.
4 weeks ago