2001.09.16 justice:

well, i don't even know where to begin at this point. i barely touched the computer here at home over the past week. usually, i'm on here two hours a night, at the very least, but i've spent most of my time glued to the tv as i imagine most of you have. i attempted to write a post talking about my feelings and opinions of the tragic events that have taken place. of course, about halfway through it, IE decided to get crazy and open a link from one window into my blogger window. now i'm writing this entry in notepad first.

normally, i don't watch much tv at all, and i almost never watch news programs or read the newspaper. this week, of course, was totally different. i just immersed myself in the news reports from new york and washington. for once, it seems, the news media has devoted the bulk of it's efforts into something that actually matters. the sad thing is that, after all the coverage of Clinton's various media-hyped problems, the Elian Gonzales inanity, and the Gary Condit crap, it seems like the coverage of this genuine tragedy has been cheapened somewhat. i seem to recall hearing about a time when the media had some integrity, when they actually did search out the truth and report the facts. nowadays it seems that there is more conjecture and opinion in the mainstream news than actual facts. even during this crisis, i heard certain reporters (dan rather immediately springs to mind) saying time & time again "we don't want to jump to conclusions", while bringing in guests who'd already done so, or asking leading questions to the ones who hadn't. i can't even count the times over the past week that i've heard things like "no one knows for sure, but" afghanistan, taliban, osama bin laden.

and who is it that pays for media that reports the news in this way? i think one of paul's recent posts sums it up pretty well. the racial backlash is completely abhorrent. the people who perpetrate these crimes against innocent people just because they look or dress a certain way are just as bad as the terrorists who orchestrated this horror. if one person kills another, they are just as evil as those who killed thousands.

which brings me back to the points i wanted to make when i attempted this post the first time.

despite the fact that this attack occurred on american soil, and involved innocent american citizens, it is not just an attack against america. it isn't an attack against freedom or democracy, it's not an attack against the flag or any of the other countless things america supposedly stands for. perhaps it was intended to be simply that, but in the end, this is nothing more than an attack against all of humanity, against all the citizens of planet Earth.
in the few days since i first attempted this post, i have heard more voices raised advising caution, and i have to say i'm glad. i was concerned that the only voices we heard were going to be like the grocery store i heard about who put the following words on their sign–"Bomb Afghanistan Tonight!" it is this type of ignorance that feeds the arrogant, self-serving media that i was ranting about earlier. and it is this type of ignorance that makes most all foreign countries look down their noses at us culturally, despite our physical strength.

i have also taken heart in hearing the reports of the leaders and citizens of many foreign countries voicing their horror, sympathy, concern, and support for the people who were affected by this tragedy.

but another thing that we must consider are the ultimate reasons for these attacks. what, aside from insanity, would drive anyone to commit the heinous acts against their fellow humans? we have to consider the fact that our troops have been in their lands for many years now, doubtlessly committing unspeakable crimes of their own. an attack like this doesn't just happen. our government has made enemies. our government has sanctioned actions that have ended the lives of innocent civilians in foreign lands. we are not innocent.

but this does not excuse these actions. this is not justice, just as an indiscriminate attack again afghanistan or another nation would not be justice. i want justice. i want the people who did this to pay. i want to make an example of them to the rest of the world to say that this type of attack against humanity will not be tolerated. but killing innocent people would not be justice, it would be terrorism.

- 11:33 pm :: permalink
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