Thoughts on Boston

First, let me say that my heart goes out to the victims of this bombing and their families.  The first responders were amazing, and it’s through their work and dedication that there weren’t more casualties.  So many of the injured could have died but for quick action by EMT’s, firefighters, police, soldiers running in the marathon, good Samaritans among the crowds watching the event.  I think the F.B.I. and law enforcement ran this investigation like clockwork and they deserve our thanks.  Clearly the speed at which they were identified rattled these young men and sent them on a path that left another young man dead — Officer Sean Collier.

What has been less admirable is the press — worried more about being fast than right.  Of all the outlets NBC has had the fewest errors, and the best reporting, so cudos to them.  Another thing I’ve found baffling is why an entire major American city has been locked down?  There is a killer loose in Boston — yes, but there are killers loose in major American cities every day, and there isn’t this level of panic.  I hate the message this is sending to would-be terrorists.  Set off a bomb and Americans will cower and disrupt their lives.  If the authorities think the suspect is in Watertown then lock down Watertown, but I’m damned if I want to let the bastards get us down.

The other thing that has left me disgusted is reaction from certain quarters on the right.  Arkansas state representative Nate Bell’s disgusting tweet Nate.jpg, but I think the prize for the most horrifying is from Senator Lindsey Graham.  Lindsey Graham tweet.  Either we have faith in our criminal justice system or we don’t.  This guy is an American citizen and god help us if we start denying due process to American citizens, and I want him to have to face his victims in a court of law.  To see what he did; the misery he inflicted.

Mostly I want us not to be afraid.  To use this as another excuse to shred our civil liberties.  As the Brits said during WWII.  Keep Calm and Carry On.

4 Responses to Thoughts on Boston

  • Melinda Snodgrass says:

    Another way to put this is that we undermine Due Process at our peril. I like the Due Process clause. It’s what sets us apart from banana republics.

  • Raymond Low says:

    Hi Melinda,

    About the media…I said pretty much the same to some friends of mine the other day. The various news outlets are in such competition with each other, they seem to jump on the most speculative of rumors (from such “reliable” sources as Twitter) and broadcast it as if it were fact. It seems the truth of the matter takes a back seat nowadays. Better to send out false information now and — when proven wrong — issue an apology later (maybe). I almost prefer to wait a week before I read the news just so I get a somewhat accurate accounting of the events.

    — Ray

  • Melinda Snodgrass says:

    I agree, Raymond. I think 24 hour news has not been a good development. They have to fill the hours so we get a lot more opinion and people screaming at each other, mistakes and rumor relayed as news.

  • Melinda Snodgrass says:

    Rachel Maddow alluded to this swamp of conspiracy theory that’s bubbling around the whole thing. Crazy people who are saying this was the government behind this. She was really concerned because news outlets that we view as “real” are starting to spread this crap.

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