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Sat., Dec. 22, 2012

Finding the meaning

Through tears we try to attach meaning to tragedy. The how and why troubles us. Yes, it would be nice if there were no guns, stones, clubs, cudgels, bows and arrows, crossbows, knives, spears, cannons or bombs.

Legislation cannot prevent tragedy, mental illness or criminal intent. Nor does the answer lie in security unless it affects every facet of our lives, but Americans value freedom too much to put up with inspections and containment, even at great cost. And, there are those who fear Big Brother more than the occasional psychopath.

The true sadness of losing innocent human beings comes from the realization that we are all members of a competitive, combative species. We slow down to gawk at accidents, sometimes having a macabre fascination with carnage. Admittedly or not, it is in our genes, and only our ability to take responsibility for our actions keeps most of us from committing the unthinkable.

There will always be those few that are bent on heinous destruction, but there is little we can do for them or about them. As long as we humans exist, there will be tears tainting the joys of life.

David Michaelson

Harrington, Wash.

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