Good morning, Netizens…
As we creep forth from our repose in the beginning of yet another week, I cannot help but be mindful of the number of innocents that were killed last week in a flurry of murders across our country. The shootings came during a particularly violent three days across the U.S., with shootings that left 14 dead in Binghamton, N.Y., and six dead in Washington state, where a father shot five of his children, ages 7 to 16, using a rifle, and later, himself. It also follows just two weeks after four police officers were fatally shot in Oakland, Calif., in the deadliest day for U.S. law enforcement since Sept. 11, 2001. Last month, a North Carolina man shot and killed eight people before police shot him and ended the rampage, and a 28-year-old man killed 10 people, including his mother and four other relatives, across two rural Alabama counties before killing himself. When will the rampage end?
In this picture, Tina Nguyen, second from left, prays with relatives of shooting victims Lan Ho and Long Huynh outside the American Civic Association in Binghamton, N.Y. where Jiverly Wong killed 13 people in a shooting rampage at the immigrant community center on Friday. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke) (April 05, 2009)
On one hand, I mourn the death of so many innocent people whose only sin, it seems, is that they were all trying to improve their plight in life through education, attempting to learn the English language so they could better integrate into American society. Mayhem and murder seems to be lurching around our country looking for their next victims, and one has to wonder when, where or how it can be stopped.
In another story, here: http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2009/apr/05/robbery-suspect-surrenders-in-yakima/ a man held up a convenience store with a gun while his 9 year-old daughter stood by his side. When he pulled the gun on the store clerk, did he ever once consider whether the clerk might pull his gun, thus beginning a deadly gunfight? Did he ask his daughter her opinion? He narrowly averted another tragedy, and I wonder if his daughter, now reunited with her mother, knows how to pray.
Some sociologists suggest the mayhem and murder will not stop until the economy improves, and perhaps that is true, for social unrest often does follow the path of financial hardships. This, of course, does little to sway the eternal question of which came first, the chicken or the egg.
However, the underlying message inherent in this picture is the young people themselves, who are praying. In an age when and where our offspring have lost sight of their relationships to God, where they seemingly have lost their ability to feel humility, when the only times they appear in the news media is shortly after they face arrests or indictment, it is refreshing to see them in a gentler light.
That seems like a good way to start the new week, hopefully free of more murder and mayhem as we approach the Easter Holiday.