pen rainbow

Monday, January 10, 2011

Finding Purpose In Sad Times

Saturday was a very bad day

My post today will be short because I am still trying to wrap my head around the actions of another crazed gunman.

It  is impossible to know what cultural influences may have contributed to the delusional thinking of Jared Lee Loughner.  It appears that he has been sliding into insanity since 2007 when he attended a local meet-and-greet event hosted by Congressman Giffords.  Yet, a lot of people made an immediate connection between the vitriolic political rhetoric of extreme right wingnuts like Sarah Palin and Sharron Angle and the explosive behavior of a murderous lunatic.

The right thing to do here is to acknowledge that the connection, whether there was one or not, scared the crap out of everyone.  It is a indicator that the level of vitriol has been so high that Jared Lee Loughner's actions were not inconsistent with the expectation that violent language could lead to violent actions.

I believe that the majority of high-ranking elected officials are decent, and my hope is that they rein in the incendiary fringes of their patronage by excluding violent imagery and inflammatory rhetoric from their political repertoire.

I hope that the parents of this disturbed young man can find peace one day.

I hope that the parents, children, grandchildren, and friends of the victims feel surrounded by love and compassion.

And finally, I hope that there are more people like Gabby Giffords who are brave enough to step forward and participate in the only system that we have for a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Long live the truly brave-hearted.