The coverage has been too much for me to stand. From the congresswoman's husband's news conferences, wherein we hear about how we may "never know the why and how" (does anyone else not know?), to the heartwarming story of how the smart, civic-minded little nine-year-old's body parts are helping this, that or the other sick person, it has driven me mad (I know, short ride...). I've had nightmares about it; I hesitate to share because my nightmares tend to be bizarre, vivid and politically incorrect. I will continue anyway, acknowledging that it is probably too soon and that some of you might believe I'm simply using the nightmare thing as a cover for my ugly waking thoughts (and that maybe I watch too much TV and other similarly blasphemous drivel...).
The first part of the dream that I remember has me in a scene from Family Guy. I'm watching TV with my family; it's New Year's Eve at Times Square. There is a particularly painful-to-watch exchange between the co-hosts, Dick Clark and Gabby Giffords. I turn to my family and say, "This reminds me of the time we had a birthday party in the special-ed class I used to tutor." Flash to Belt Junior High School, circa 1982, special-ed class. We all sing, "Happy Birthday!" or something as close to that as possible. So many exuberant, bright smiling faces--fade to black.
Next thing I know, I'm myself, watching one of the C-SPANs. It's Congresswoman Giffords' triumphant return! There's a problem. She's not all there. She was not a cartoon, but the best way I can translate it from my thoughts to yours comes from a South Park episode. "Oh, Gabby! You look great!" The open wound and gurgling were disgusting beyond description. I screamed, then I woke up.
Please let me explain myself. I find nothing about (seemingly senseless) violence humorous or amusing. I believe what's gnawing at my conscience is the widespread lack of respect for others that is running rampant in our society. The ever opportunistic political assholes have called for civility in our discourse. In other words, let's talk nice while we try to stab each other in the back. Fraudulent dipshits and wankers, all of them! The ugly blight on their hollow hearts will quickly dissolve any sugar-glazed veneer they put up front. But I digress...
I think about all the inner-city children who've been hit and killed by stray bullets shot by their local punk-ass, evil pieces of shit. They aren't important enough to merit the same kind of coverage; seldom does the whole community come out and erect obscenely large impromptu shrines for them. Their deaths make no less sense than the deaths of more important people, and their lives were no less invaluable, still it becomes a matter of record that they were not so important.
All of this serves to amplify the faint residual echoes of my Catholic upbringing: the love God the Father has for all of us that we all should have for all of our sisters and brothers; the true equality we have in His eyes; how we should aspire to see one another as God sees us. I think of all the ugly ideas spouted by such enlightened fools as avowed atheists. I think of how they look down on or even hold in contempt anyone so naive, gullible, stupid, ignorant and backward as to have, let alone to profess to have, a belief in such wondrous things. What is wrong with hoping that life is a divine comedy and acting accordingly? The world would be a far better place if we were all kind and true to one another; deny it! There are so many good things about faith for which to recommend it; how can we dismiss it and ignore it?
I don't really begrudge prominent people their importance; most of them have earned it and whatever additional respect society confers on them. I hasten to add that no one should ever feel so important as to believe that he is inherently better than any of the rest of us. Be ye warned: our appointment with the ultimate equalizer draws ever closer--ineluctably, quietly and more quickly than we know.
Have a nice day.