For American-Muslims, dread

By David Rohde
April 20, 2013

Louisville, Kentucky – Friday morning, four Pakistani-American doctors dressed in business suits and medical scrubs sat in one of this city’s most popular breakfast spots and fretted. At an adjacent table, a middle-aged woman grew visibly nervous when their native land was mentioned. One of the doctors, a 47-year-old cardiologist, was despondent.

“We were all praying this wouldn’t happen,” he told me. “No matter what you do in your community, that’s the label that is attached.”

Another doctor worried that years of outreach efforts by the city’s 10,000-strong Muslim community, a mix of Bosnians, Somalis and Iraqis, would be lost. Thursday, he sent a letter to the local newspaper condemning the Boston attack “no matter who committed it.” When news broke Friday that the two suspects were Chechen Muslims, his family grew nervous.

“Five minutes ago my mom called from Copenhagen to see if I was ok,” the 41-year-old geriatrician said. “It rattles all of us.”

Clearly, Bostonians have and will suffer the most from the marathon bombings. Hundreds of thousands of innocent people “sheltered in place” in and around Boston Friday. The injured now face months, if not years, of arduous recuperation. And the families of the dead will never recover.

It is by no means equivalent but the attack also impacts the United States’ roughly 2.5 million Muslims. As television screens displayed the words “the terrorist next door” Friday, a sense of dread spread among Muslim community leaders here.

“When this happens,” the cardiologist said, “it just gets tough.”

Twelve years after the September 11, 2001 attacks, some see it almost as a cliché to say all Muslims should not be blamed for the actions of a radical few. But it is vital that understandably anxious Americans adhere to that principle. Whatever their motivations, the Tsarnaev brothers are not representative of Muslims in the United States — or the world.

In the days and weeks ahead, Americans will learn chilling details about the Tsarnaev brothers. Links to groups outside the United States may be revealed. Their years in the America will be dissected. The immigration policies that allowed their families to emigrate will likely be criticized.

But it is important not to exaggerate their impact. Days of chaos have unfolded in Boston but the attacks have not paralyzed the country. Four deaths and 176 injuries are heart rending but they are a tiny fraction of the 3,000 who perished on September 11. The attack’s primary legacy is fear. The actions of two young men will focus an enormous amount of suspicion on Chechens and Muslims across the nation.

Based on initial reports, the Tsarnaevs’ story is chilling. Two brothers, one an aspiring boxer and the other a high school wrestling captain, were seemingly transformed overnight into soulless killing machines. I suspect, though, that the process took years.

In 2008, the Taliban kidnapped two Afghan colleagues and me after inviting us to an interview. Held captive in the tribal areas of Pakistan for seven months, we found that Arab, Afghan and Pakistani militants had created a sophisticated system of schools, training camps and indoctrination videos that slowly severed young men’s bonds with their families.

The only relationship that mattered, recruits were told, was their relationship to God. The only cause that mattered, clerics preached, was stopping a vast – and nonexistent – Christian-Jewish-Hindu conspiracy to obliterate Islam from the face of the earth.

For six weeks, I lived with a suicide bomber who was convinced that American forces were forcibly converting Afghan Muslims to Christianity. Neckties, he insisted, were secret symbols of Christianity. Deeming them unclean, he burned newspapers with photographs of women without veils.

No matter how long I spent talking with him, I could not alter his attitudes. Radicalism gave him a cause, a community and an identity.

Louisville’s Muslim leaders embrace an entirely different interpretation of Islam. Tolerant, worldly and passionately committed to education, they accuse Saudi Arabia of spreading an intolerant Wahhabist interpretation of Islam that distorts their faith and endangers their lives. The cardiologist, who asked not to be named, said he does not fear attacks in America. Rather, he fears for the safety of his family in Pakistan.

Last year, Sunni Wahhabist militants in Pakistan killed 400 Shias, who they consider heretics, particularly doctors. One victim was a close friend of the cardiologist and a fellow physician. Jihadists sprayed the man’s car with bullets, killing him and his 11 year-old son.

“My brother is a doctor over there,” the cardiologist said. “They target all the high-end professionals.”

Mohammad Babar, the Pakistani-American geriatrician, was happy to be quoted by name. Only his grandmother remains in Pakistan. He said the United States was a “safe haven” where he can practice and spread a moderate form of Islam without fearing assassination. In the wake of the Boston attack, he vowed to redouble his efforts.

“We are doing a bad job of reaching out to young people,” he said. “Extremists are doing a great job.”

Tensions exist in Louisville. Residents of a neighboring county recently rejected an effort to create the area’s first Muslim cemetery. And clearly not every member of the Muslim community here is as broadminded as Babar.

Since moving to Louisville in 1995, the peripatetic community activist has joined the local Rotary club, formed a close relationship with the mayor and set up meetings between Muslim, Christian and Jewish leaders. Next week, he is holding an interfaith “open house” at his mosque. Next month, he is helping coordinate a visit by the Dalai Lama.

“We need to let people know,” Babar said. “We need to let our communities know what we think.”

The problem, he argued, was radicalism.

“In the whole world,” Babar said, “the far right is getting stronger.”

He is right. The enemy is not Islam. It is extremism.

PHOTO (Top): American flag hangs on a car outside the American Muslim Society mosque in Detroit, Michigan April 5, 2011. REUTERS/Eric Thayer

PHOTO (Insert): A group of interdenominational religious leaders and their supporters gather outside the Islamic Center of America mosque to rally for peace in Dearborn, Michigan April 21, 2011. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook

69 comments

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When I see an Arab person, I think Terrorist. I know its wrong, but there it is. The bombing in Boston, does not help that image. I’m not an extremist, or don’t believe myself to be one. Every thing you hear on the news, points to a very violent Islamic religion. Sharia law, violence against women and children. My understanding is that ALL Islam is governed by Sharia Law. The Koran states death to all infidels, that is ME. How can I not be concerned ??

Posted by MrBean1 | Report as abusive

Americans have been self-critical about the setting up of Japanese camps that rounded up all Japanese during our time at war, but the bottom line is that none of those folks were harmed while not a single terrorist act was perpetrated during this time – pretty good results from my standpoint. The problem is that we don’t want to accept that Muslims are at war with us (actually, who are they NOT at war with – they can’t even stop killing each other). This bombing PROVES that every single Muslim is a potential ticking-time bomb. So we have 2 choices: either we modify our liberal ways of thinking and look at this from a PRACTICAL standpoint, or we can maintain a moral philosophy that “the rights of a few are worth the pain of many” and then just live with the fact that these events will be happening on an ongoing (continuous) basis.

Posted by PepePinguita | Report as abusive

OK, I got it. The moderate muslim community is shocked and saddened by what these home-grown terrorists did, and how it will affect their lives.

I’m sure the same can be said of the progression of the Nazis in Germany as Jewish friends “disappeared”. But the fact of the matter is that not enough Germans timely expressed their concerns and opposition to prevent the Nazis from progressively taking over effective and unrestrained control of Germany and much of the world. The “price” of their “not getting involved” was that millions and millions on both sides of the resulting conflict would die and literally countless others be grievously and permanently injured.

The tide of mobile, contagious Islamic radicalism and discontent is on the rise in the midst of day-to-day competition for jobs, food, opportunity and acceptance wherever muslims live. If they can not or will not excise this cancer that originates and grows within their religious communities they will pay a price.

There will increasingly and necessarily emerge a “Kill ‘em all, let God sort ‘em out” mentality in each and every other society their very existence threatens. It is a conflict of “values” and not so much race, like the very public gang wars in Chicago in the “roaring twenties”. There comes a point when society must finally and firmly say “enough”.

We all do what we have to do to preserve OUR “way of life” against those who would take from us our safety, our future, and our very sense of well being in life.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

OH NO! The members of the ghastly international terror cult are feeling DREAD! Poor, poor savage little beasts.

Posted by ChrisYonts | Report as abusive

The enemy is Islamic Terrorism, which is suppported by the majority of muslims. DON’T FOOL YOURSELF.

Posted by ChrisYonts | Report as abusive

Maybe, just maybe, if we didn’t promote “multiculturalism” as though it was the “State Religion”, our “Pseudo-Americans” — in other words, the African-Americans, Mexican-Americans, Muslim-Americans, Chinese-Americans, etc. — wouldn’t feel so threatened when someone of “their” culture does something unnacceptable to “our” culture, whether it be mass shootings or bombings.

It used to be that other cultures at least made an attempt to assimilate into the prevailing European-American culture — of which I am one and I refer to myself an an American citizen nevertheless, but increasing less proud of that fact each and every day as I see and understand where this POS country is going — but now the old “melting pot” theory, which admittedly was little more than government propaganda, has been totally discarded in favor of open multiculturalism.

Ain’t multiculturalism grand? Look at what it has done for this nation. Anyone familiar with the term Balkanization?

Let me enlighten you with the definition of Balkanization, which is NEVER mentioned as a logical and predictable result of multiculuralism (defined for comparison).

======================

Balkanization

1.
to divide (a country, territory, etc.) into small, quarrelsome, ineffectual states.
2.
( often lowercase ) to divide (groups, areas, etc.) into contending and usually ineffectual factions: a movement to balkanize minority voters.

———————————–

Multiculturalim

1.
the state or condition of being multicultural.
2.
the preservation of different cultures or cultural identities within a unified society, as a state or nation.

The view that the various cultures in a society merit equal respect and scholarly interest. It became a significant force in American society in the 1970s and 1980s as African-Americans, Latinos, and other ethnic groups explored their own history.

—————————————

Oxymoron (the word that should appear as one of the definitions of Multiculturalism).

a figure of speech by which a locution produces an incongruous, seemingly self-contradictory effect, as in “cruel kindness” or “to make haste slowly.”

—————————————–

Bullshit (yet another definition of Multiculturalism).

1.
nonsense, lies, or exaggeration.
verb (used with object)
2.
to lie or exaggerate to.
verb (used without object)
3.
to speak lies or nonsense.

interjection
4.
(used especially to express disagreement.)

Note #4 is the only acceptable use of the word bullshit when speaking about multiculturalism.

1. exaggerated or foolish talk; nonsense
2. deceitful or pretentious talk

==========================

THAT is what is wrong with this country — “MULTICULTURALISM”.

Apparently, the American people are too stupid to realize we have been invaded and are being destroyed from within by foreign cultures that are intend on destroying this nation.

Why?

Cheap labor!

The wealthy class has returned to its “roots” of unmitigated greed, and is busily destroying OUR country, just so THEY can prosper.

The rule for the “road to riches” for them is, if you can’t export the job, then import the laborer.

Notice, for example, the people the author was speaking to are not “real” Americans, but simply imported cheap labor. Is it working? Have our health care costs gone down?

HELL NO!

The reason is the wealthy are driving down labor costs and pocketing the extra profits!

DUH!

As a side note, just in case there is anyoneout there who can understand what is going on, the real reason economics doesn’t work anymore is because it has been transformed by the wealthy class into a global concept, but free trade — as Adam Smith pointed out in his Wealth of Nations (1776) CANNOT be a global phenomenon or it won’t work. Instead, it will favor the vested interests of those in power.

DUH!

What do you people think is happening and why, or do you bother to think at all.

Come on people, this isn’t “rocket science”, nor do you need an advanced degree (like the MBA that I have, which I am admitting as matter of revealing my interest in the subject) to understand it. This is simply good old fashioned greed, pure and simple.

The way to destroy greed — the tried and true method — is to pass and ENFORCE laws that punish those who would break the laws to destroy this country for profit.

THAT IS WHAT THE WEALTHY CLASS IS DOING — THEY HAVE OVERTHROWN OUR GOVERNMENT WITH TRADE, BANKING AND TAX LAWS THAT BENEFIT THEM AT OUR EXPENSE.

I suggest you people pull your heads out of your rectal cavities and pay attention to what the wealthy class is doing, instead of being diverted by all these “hot button” issues the wealthy use to distract you with.

In my opinion, it is already far too late to force change peacefully. But it is worth giving it a shot. The problem with this nation, since it has increasingly drifted towards mindless liberalism, is “the lights are on, but nobody is home”.

Prove me wrong, if you can.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

@PseudoTurtle,

As usual, you contribute a lot of good research and facts only to turn off those who are thus far “with you” with your ever-repeated verbal rants about “America’s wealthy class”. Hello? Successful Americans had NOTHING to do with the Boston tragedy.

Only in what America’s liberal “academia” could someone with your brains and ability satisfy all requirements for an MBA and still have NO COMMON SENSE! You just can’t grok that Americans love a “winner”, and all, eventually hope to be one.

No one wins a debate by demonizing those a majority of “judges” admire and hope someday to join, whether by luck, skill, or sheer effort. In Boston, even those financial villains, America’s “Banksters” and other unrestrained financial criminals who benefit from perennial lack of enforcement of existing American law, rules and regulations are, for once, clearly not implicated.

Snap out of it!

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

There are peaceful Muslims who should also be heard:
Muslimsforlife(dot)org – successfully collected 10,000 pints of blood to honor 3,000 dead of 9/11 (by saving 30,000 lives.
Muslimsforpeace(dot)org – condemning terrorism, promoting Islamic value of loyalty to ones nation, peace, bus-ads and flyers and leaflets to promote the same.

These terrorists fight not for Islam but for their own personal gains. Islam is just a garb they use to hide their political agendas while Islam instructs its followers to practice patience:
[Qur'an 2:257] “There should be no compulsion in religion. Surely, right has become distinct from wrong; … ”
[Qur'an 3:187] “… you shall surely hear many hurtful things from those who were given the Book before you and from those who set up equals to God. But if you show fortitude and act righteously, that indeed is a matter of strong determination.”

Posted by ktshamim | Report as abusive

Where is the outrage from the Islamic community in America to stop these atrocities. Shouldn’t they be on TV, writing op-eds, blogging, etc. demanding an end to the violence that their faith “supposedly” does not support? Not just in Bostons case either.

I feel no sympathy for them, they have chosen a faith that kills mercilessly throughout the world. Evaluate your faith not our understanding.

I dare anyone in America to show a picture of Muhhamed publicly and see what so called “normal American Islamists” think you should deserve. Its not a high five. But we will continually vilify Americans who lack “understanding”.

Shame on you David Rhode. You are part of the problem not the answer.

Posted by Useyourdome | Report as abusive

Does anyone actually read the text of the Quran? Read it.

It is self evident. Sadly. I is a religion of war and conquest. That is the truth. Read the text in its own words! Wake up world. We are past the medieval ages. We are post enlightmenment. Are these ancient ramblings the template of human behavior today? Please….. spare me

Posted by philosopfizer | Report as abusive

Read the Quran. Read translations by muslim scholars.

The text is self evident. How can America and the word even talk about these issues without reading the words of Muhammad. Read them. You will be unpleasantly surprised, and see what the problem is. Muhammad was a warlord. He burned cities and slaugherered people It is all self evident. READ AMERICA

Posted by philosopfizer | Report as abusive

Does anyone who comments here even read the Quran? I suggest wou quit talking about that which you haven’t even bothered to read or witness. Just read it. Then tell me what you think….

Posted by philosopfizer | Report as abusive

Islam is Extremism and Extremism is Islam. I being a hindu and an Indian have lived my life very close to muslims, many of them are my best friends. But one thing is for sure, Muslims all across the globe hate America. It doesn’t matters how educated or how intellectual a muslim is. A muslim is bound to become an extremist at any point of time in his life. We hindus know this in India, and we keep an eye of suspicion on them. Americans and europians are too liberal and innocent to go deep in the psyche of muslims. Americans need to check immigration to muslims or this liberal attitude will kill the peace in U.S.A. In India we recieve millions of immigrants from Bangladesh every year which has lead to killing of ethnic hindu population in States of India like Assam and Mizoram.

Posted by shiv88 | Report as abusive

I will preface my brief remarks by saying that I am not religious. On the contrary, my parents were devout and under their direction, I was more involved with my religion than were many of my peers.

I am disappointed and concerned that the characters mentioned in this article are so well educated, yet so unable/unwilling to take an honest look at their belief system. They should be able to discern the anthropological reasons behind this intransigence.

The enemy indeed is Islam… and Christianity and all of the other religions of the world. The enemy is willful ignorance.

In order for humanity to advance in our own collective interest, we should recognize that it is ‘divisive’ for anyone to believe that they have an omnipotent friend who thinks that they and their family, their community and their country are special and that they should be blessed above all others.

Posted by breezinthru | Report as abusive

Just very sad that anyone can turn against a country which welcomes you and gives you the opportunity to become whatever you want. Look no further than Eldar Djangirov, also known as Eldar, is a Russian-American jazz pianist. He was born on January 28, 1987 Kyrgyzstan. Eldar is now one of the greatest Jazz pianists on the planet, and it took a really great country to make this happen. Just listen to his album which is #4 in th Jazz charts. Just magical. Good will always prevail over evil and the greatest asset in USA is the diversity and opportunity it gives to the world.

Posted by kapurkk | Report as abusive

American architecture will benefit from the addition of some conscious traditional motifs consciously quoted as the example shown above. But they could be using better and more attractive materials than what looks like a utilitarian yellow brick.

The Krishna people are building a splendid new temple in PA I’ve heard about. The Muslim community could be building houses of prayer that would make Aladdin envious. The Irish did it with St Pat’s in Manhattan. The French and Italians did it with their parish churches in Waterbury CT where my parents were raised. Every neighbporhood had it’s ethnic roots for linguistic reasons at first and eventually they were established and moved on to the burbs and elsewhere.

Now the question is – will anybody care to keep the former hometown neigHborhood churches. American is the last word in disposable culture.

The rule is always in more that n body mass, “If you don’t use it you loose it”!

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

The problem is not simple to resolve and human society is constantly evolving. There is no master plan and there is no solution. We have to hope for the best and keep plugging away. One must also accept that the more that ‘righteous’ people inflict their will on the ‘unrighteous’, the worse the problem becomes. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. We are still dealing with the effects of the second World War, which stemmed from the 1st World War, which stemmed from empire building, which stemmed from….etc, etc. We have so much more information at our fingertips now that if you set yourself going in one direction you can find justification for pretty much anything. No-one has the answers, no-one really knows the causes. If you are an islamic extremist then your ‘death to America’ arguments will be justifiable. If you are an American, crushing the islamic extremists will be justifiable. Polishing everything with ‘we are freedom lovers’ doesn’t make for a universal truth. If i don’t go round to my neighbours house and tell him how he should live and think, the chances are he won’t come knocking on my door to do the same. Making the initial move to ensure he doesn’t even think about it, is not a particularly sensible strategy. At some point, people all across the world are going to have to start to just back off and back down.

Posted by edrico | Report as abusive

naïve! naïve! what has to happen to this country for people to wake up?!! you would think with all the information on the web for people to see articles, information, videos as to what takes place in muslim countries. how fathers kill children, how men rape women and kill maim and destroy, people would get it. but no. people are very naïve and have their heads in the sand.

Posted by hahareallyfunny | Report as abusive

@ OneOfTheSheep –

You state, “As usual, you contribute a lot of good research and facts only to turn off those who are thus far “with you” with your ever-repeated verbal rants about “America’s wealthy class”. Hello? Successful Americans had NOTHING to do with the Boston tragedy.

Only in what America’s liberal “academia” could someone with your brains and ability satisfy all requirements for an MBA and still have NO COMMON SENSE! You just can’t grok that Americans love a “winner”, and all, eventually hope to be one.

No one wins a debate by demonizing those a majority of “judges” admire and hope someday to join, whether by luck, skill, or sheer effort. In Boston, even those financial villains, America’s “Banksters” and other unrestrained financial criminals who benefit from perennial lack of enforcement of existing American law, rules and regulations are, for once, clearly not implicated.

Snap out of it!

—————————————

OOTS, I think with my education and experience I probably understand what is wrong with this nation, especially from an economic viewpoint far more than you do.

As a CPA, as well as a Plant Controller and Finance Manager in the high-tech industry for several multinational corporations, I worked very closely with these people each day for many decades before retiring. This was during the “Great Migration” of US jobs overseas, mainly to China and SE Asia.

I have been in attendance during quarterly earnings release sessions when the corporation realeases their earnings to the public, including providing support to the CFO/CEO during BOD meetings presentations, and in an advisory capacity in strategy sessions with CEOs and CFOs.

I understand the accounting methods used to avoid US taxes by corporations, including the truly massive amounts that tax avoidance involves. The name of the game is profits for the shareholders, even at the expense of destroying this nation.

The wealthy class simply does not have the same priorities that the non-wealthy do, which means they operate under a strict profit motive, and as a rule do not care about the “hot button” issues the masses find so important.
They care solely about profits and creating wealth for themselves. For example, job outsourcing, job “insourcing” — which is the real underlying point of this article, and is the direct result of importing cheap labor to increase their profits — immigration policies, taxes, trade and banking are nothing more than a means to an end.

As I said, it is the importation of cheap labor that is the underlying issue of many of our social and economic problems. Those cheap labor policies create “multiculturalism” and have been doing so for many decades. This in turn results in a nation that is becoming increasingly destabilized, which results in attacks on our culture like 9/11 and now this Boston Massacre.

It is a dual phenomenon. We attempt to export our “culture” to the Middle East, thus destabilizing foreign countries to place favorable regimes in power, which increases profits for the wealthy class, but whose peoples see our materialism as an anathema, and are then motivated to attack our nation. Since we have imported so many “Pseudo-Americans” it is incredibly easy for foreign nationals to penetrate our nation’s borders, and we become extremely vulnerable to their attacks.

THAT is the link to the supposedly “non-existent” responsibility you claim for the wealthy class.

In point of fact, this nation NEVER does ANYTHING that isn’t motivated by profits. Take another example for instance, the wealth drive — strongly supported by “Pseudo-Americans” — to revise our immigration policy (i.e. to give at least 11 million Hispanics a road to citizenship). By the way, how do we know there are only 11 million illegal immigrants here? And, even if there are only 11 million, how many unemployed US citizens do we have currently. I’m not sure anyone, not even the government, knows that number because it isn’t being accurately reported anyhow. There is nothing wrong with the present immigration policy, except it isn’t favorable to the massive numbers (and growing daily) of “Pseudo-Americans” who would be forced to leave. THAT is the problem. The wealthy connection is that they don’t want all that cheap labor being forced out of this county because it would hurt their profits.

I submit it is you OOTS, who have no “common sense”. The American Dream has been turned into an American Nightmare by the wealthy class, mainly as a result of their ascension to power once again since their collapse during the Great Depression when some modicum of social legislation was forced on them. They are now very close to having reversed almost all of that hated legislation imposed on them, which will result in destroying this nation. Our past, prior to the Great Depression (which was the direct result of wealthy excess during the 1920s) was one of Social Darwinism (i.e. survival of the fittest) and the “immigrant nation” we are so proud of was in fact a nightmare of deprivation and hardship for those mostly European immigrants. THAT is what the wealthy class are. It is a historical fact. Don’t take my word for it, do some research for yourself.

The wealthy class in this country are NOT benign, and NEVER have been. I would say to you “SNAP OUT OF IT!”. You are living in a world that exists solely in your mind. If you admire them and think you can ever become one of them, WAKE UP, since it isn’t going to happen. At least, not for the vast majority of non-wealthy people in this country.

Our problems, as I said, are due SOLELY to the rise of the neocons, beginning with Reagan. EVERYTHING this nation has done over the past 30 years has been SOLELY to benefit the wealthy class. THAT IS A FACT.

If we are to survive, we MUST reverse ALL the free trade, tax and banking policies of the past three decades. It is literally as simple as that. But we must first understand there is a serious problem, determine the root causes of that problem and then be willing to do what it takes to resolve it.

For example, the American people have lost faith in Congress, but apparently can’t seem to make the connection between wealthy class lobbying efforts and the gridlock of our government. THAT IS A FACT. Change our government to a system to include term limits for political office and make lobbying illegal. DUH! What is there about lobbying that you people cannot seem to understand? LOBBYING IS LEGALIZED BRIBERY OF OUR PUBLIC OFFICIALS! How can you possibly expect our government to operate like this? It is the wealthy class that is responsible. The proof is the enormous swing in wealth from the middle class to the wealthy class. DUH!

EVERYTHING that happens in this nation is a result of what our government does, the laws and regulations it passes, thus there IS a direct connection between the wealthy class and what is happening to this country.

I am NOT simply ranting. What I AM is a “whistle-blower”, based on my insider information, but you people are either too stupid or disinterested to understand what I am saying.

As I have said many times before, “it’s the wealthy, stupid!”

You don’t need to have my education or experience. All you need is to follow the money, but you are apparently too enamored with the wealthy class and prone to listen to their bullshit propaganda to understand what they are doing to this country and to you personally.

OOTS, I would venture to say I probably understand wealthy motivations far better than you do.

Don’t take my word for it, “do the math”!

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

@ OneOfTheSheep –

If you think my comment immediately above is solely an “unreasonable rant” against the wealthy class, I’d like to see a response that doesn’t include a gut-level emotional response.

Clearly, you do not “grok” (i.e. “to understand thoroughly and intuitively”) the wealthy class as I do or you would not “grok” (i.e. “to communicate sympathetically”) about them.

ALL of your comments are based solely on an emotional response, most of which have no connection with reality at all.

As the saying goes, “opinions are like rectal cavities, everybody has one”, and yours add about as much value as that.

If you MUST attack me, at least do it with facts.

If you don’t understand what you are saying, then say nothing at all.

Responding to you is a total waste of my time.

I have told you before that I will not respond to your rantings and personal attacks, and this is a reminder of that fact.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

@breezinthru,

VERY well said!

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

“He is right. The enemy is not Islam. It is extremism.” Very glib, but until such time as moderate muslims take a firm, unequivocal position against their own extremists, they will continue to be grouped with them. If some muslims truly want to be considered as acceptable citizens, it is up to *them* to teach their extremists that their acts are uncondonable.

Posted by MauriceCalvert | Report as abusive

@ breezinthru –

While I tend to agree in general that “The enemy indeed is Islam… and Christianity and all of the other religions of the world”, as proven by history, but in reality religion is simply one of the tools of the ruling classes.

“The enemy is (indeed) willful ignorance”, but that can be applied to a much broader context than the simple choice you make to blame religion for everything.

Religion and the State have found common cause many centuries ago, which is why they tend to survive so well with each other, and violently reject anyone who is not a “true believer”.

Religious differences are also proof positive that a multicultural society cannot survive.

Thus, belief that a society such as ours with so many “fault lines” that go far beyond mere religious differences can survive much longer is also “willful ignorance” of a kind much worse than simple religious intolerance.

That kind of “willful ignorance” is killing this nation.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

@Philophosizer: I am a Muslim. The Quran is a complex book, it is not read as a mere book, from chapter to chapter and line by line. Instead, it is interpreted by Muslim scholars for laymen Muslims to follow. The biggest reason for this is “context”. We don’t just take 1 part of the Quran and say “ok let’s go act on this now”. Find me a recognized Muslim scholar who says we should kill and murder people to advance our ideology. If this were true, we would have a lot more attempts in the US wouldn’t be on account of the millions of devout, practicing Muslims in the US. If you want an official response by Muslims on the attacks, visit ISNA’s site: http://www.isna.net/national-news.html – thanks, Moazzam

Posted by CuriousInquiry | Report as abusive

@ breezinthru –

A further thought on your comment about religion being the sole problem facing society.

Karl Marx made the same mistake — roughly that religion is the opiate of the masses — assuming that religion was the problem in realizing the excesses of the State and preventing them from rising against the State.

His mistakes were in not realizing that religious beliefs are a fundamental part of human behavior and to remove it from satisfaction creates problems of its own.

Also, he thought once the State was overthrown it could be replaced by a collective form of government, once again ignoring human nature. His mistakes resulted in Russian Communism, which devastated the Russian people.

It is far better to find a method to control the State, to arrange for a “logical” progression of the State, depending upon the particular needs of each culture, in order to ensure stability and a peaceful transition of government.

When religious/cultural differences arise, the chances for an orderly transition decline in proportion to the size of the underlying differences of the population.

A government that is perceived to be out of control by the people is guaranteed to be overthrown at some point.

This particular outcome cannot be ascribed to religion, but it can exacerbate the problem.

Thus, while it is not the fault of the religious differences in our culture that are to blame per se, they can certainly exacerbate social problems to the point where the government cannot survive.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

OOTs always blames the victims. I was convinced he spoke like the NAZI party the first time we crossed keypads years ago. I like to think the man is really engaging in a guerre de plume (I think I just made that up) and doesn’t mean a word of it.

Or he is very old and cranky and totally overwhelmed now.
It is very difficult to write effectively. I still can’t get it absolutely right! Sometimes I hate the very electrons he floats on and we both type into!

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

I remember making a simple comment in a recent Reuters article that “gay marriage” may be a step too far for most people in this country to accept at this point in time — which is basically the position the US Supreme Court is probably going to take — and was literally “handed my head” for making such a bigoted comment.

I am neither a racist, nor a bigot, but most of the comments directed at me were indeed both.

Notice the response, or more correctly total lack thereof, to my comments here.

Clearly, the wealthy class are correct in depending upon your incredible stupidity, total lack of concern about the consequences of what they are openly doing to you, and your inability to determine what is important in life.

You people truly deserve what you get.

Don’t bother to reply/rebut, since I am signing off now and will not read your screed anyhow.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

As usual, fear and ignorance of the real problem abides. Begin withdrawing the US military to a state of defense readiness instead of “power projection” worldwide.
Quit using the American military to force compliance with the demands of Western corporations and the world’s wealthy.
Teach Americans that the reason they lead the “good life” is due to the sucking resources from the rest of the globe.
When family after family of Afghanis, Iraquis, Africans, South Americans, Indonesians, ad nauseum are visited with death and destruction in the maintenance of the West’s “good life”, there will be continued and even more extreme violence from hate filled and disaffected people who see no other way to attack the Empire and its behemoth military and corporate might.
It really is very simple. Pull in the horns enough to protect, but not project! Learn to conserve and quit trying to have a 3 car garage, 4 TV’s, constant shopping, every electronic doodad available, travel to all corners of the globe, driving cars with one person at the wheel, on and on.
THINK. Don’t react!

Posted by hapibeli | Report as abusive

I disagree. Moderate Muslims (and Christians) enable the extremists and fundamentalists. If there are only a handful of Muslims in the world they are not likely to be ANY terrorists or extremists. But when there are billions of them, the few extremists look to all the moderate Muslims to justify there actions. The extremists believe they are fighting for the cause of the moderates. Without the moderates there are no extremists. If you study all the religions instead of focusing on just one, it becomes clear very quickly that God was created by man and not the other way around. Human beings need to use reason and science to find the answers to life’s questions. There are not any answers in religious texts, just stories.

Posted by ToddIsGod | Report as abusive

I am an agricultural employer and can speak for many farmers who have a difficult time finding good, dependable, local employees. Most of the respondents I get when I place a help wanted ad fall into the following category: No vehicle/license (DUI), no high school diploma, frequent absences (don’t bother to give notice or call), will disappear for 20-30 minutes on the back 40 and smoke a joint, leave empty beer cans/bottles hidden around the farm or call you at 2am for a ride home from a bar or party, in their 30′s or 40′s and live with family or parents, have children with multiple mothers and are behind on child support, and need you to cash their check and pay them the cash because they have no ID or bank account. Suddenly, a dependable, sober, responsible foreigner doesn’t look so bad.

Posted by macbeth76 | Report as abusive

Hey Pseudo Turtle, so you have an MBA. You have said several things that I, and many others, can agree with in general. The unfortunate things about your comments, are simple. One, apparently you believe that because of your graduate business degree you have greater understanding of world history, including the past and present mixture of religion, politics and money, than does virtually anyone else, regardless of others’ accumen of knowledge and experience. Second, it is painfully obvious that you did not, in obtaining either of your college degrees or in secondary education, learn to write very well.

If you really want to communicate to and with people, why not consider learning what you did not learn in high school and undergraduate college: learn to write. At the very least, learn to write not in run-on sentences. Run-on sentences do at some point become difficult to follow.

Then, speak to people as though they might possibly be your intellectual equals, rather than speaking down to them in long tirades. Try these things, and you may be more satisfied.

Posted by taxcorps2 | Report as abusive

There are at least two statements in the above commentary that I believe are true, and are extremely important. One, the statement of Babar, that the far right is getting stronger. I am no scholar of history, but to my understanding this, the increasing power of the far right, has important strategic similarities to the rise to power of the NAZI party in pre-war Germany.

Second, that the enemy is not Islam, but extremism. As has been noted, I agree that a great contributor to the increase in power of the ultra-wealthy right wing, is the the recruitment of extremism in religion. Specifically, certain segments of the Christian religion have been enrolled to direct voting from the pulpit, gaining votes for right wing politicians by demonizing the populist party of the United States, the Democrat Party.

Beyond that, I totally agree with good ol’ Pseudo Turtle about the intent and modus operandi of most, not necessarily all, of the wealthy. It does seem that individuals of ultra wealthy class, most notably the Kochs and some of the Waltons, with the slightly wealthy and the wannabees as their lieutenants, are obsessed with increasing their already great wealth at the expense of a financially comfortable middle class, and of our society in general. The affliction of greed is so powerful as to cause the short-sighted tactics aimed at creating a lords and serfs only society. Those who Pseudo Turtle speaks of would be very happy, IMO, to have most of us in their servitude, with us just happy to have food, clothing and shelter, and not be tortured or shot.

Lastly, if Reuters had “Like” and “Reply” buttons on their comments, I would “Like” Paintcans’s comments.

Posted by taxcorps2 | Report as abusive

One of the strategies of the wealthy, not in the scope of the above article and not even mentioned by PT, to further gain control over the middle class, is to bring about the demise of the free public education system in this country. This begins with unrealistic criticism of public schools, particularly school teachers (who do not run the schools, contrary to the thinking of some) and the use of tax dollars to support non-public education, through a voucher system.

Posted by taxcorps2 | Report as abusive

The media coverage and the societal response to these events seems so disheartening. Don’t we affirm the terrorist methodology by allowing their actions to monopolize our attention and resources. Yes, people doing horrific things need to be stopped and the sense of imminent danger is mesmerizing but nobody is suggesting we send the shock troops to the town of West, which was apparently blown to bits because it was built next to something that could produce an unbelievably large explosion.

Posted by jtrealfunny | Report as abusive

Pseudo Turtle: good grief!

Though I totally agree with you about the objectives and methods of most of the ultra-wealthy, there are a few things in which that I do not agree with you. The most salient of those is the extent to which you see yourself as more intelligent, more educated, and more perceptive, than everyone else reading the above article and commenting. First of all, the people you probably are talking about are not the ones reading this article, and even this internet news outlet, if they are reading anything. You have a lot of good experience and perception, but you are largely preaching to the choir here, and being derogatory to them at the same time.

Posted by taxcorps2 | Report as abusive

A quick reply to some of the commenters here to clear up a misconception: If one actually reads the Qur’an, one will find that the main message is that God will reward the good and punish the wicked, and that it is very important to strive sincerely for a pure faith. There are also numerous passages calling on the believers to band together politically and struggle to make the pure faith triumphant on the earth.

This call can be compared to nationalism’s call for people of a nation to band together politically and struggle to make their culture and values triumphant on the earth. Historically, this call for fighting has been applied almost exclusively in the context of a Muslim state– in the same way that military and diplomatic actions by Western nations are directed by national governments.

When Muhammad and his companions were a powerless minority in Mecca, they took absolutely no violent actions, even when violence, wrongful imprisonment, and torture were used against them. The orthodox ruling is that this extreme pacifism and forbearance is the correct attitude for Muslims living in Western countries.

Calls for subversive violence and treachery, i.e. terrorism, are considered by most scholars to be a baseless innovation. So the “moderates” in this case really do have the weight of tradition and religious authority on their side.

Muhammad is reported to have said, “Do you know what type of person does not believe? Someone whose neighbor is not safe from his evil. Verily, he does not believe, he does not believe, he does not believe!”

Posted by MattJD | Report as abusive

This was the act of demented extremists, not of a particular religion, as the scapegoaters, stereotypers, and haters would have it.

Let’s recall the case of Eric Rudolf, the Christian terrorist behind the quite similar Olympic Park bombing in 1996 that killed 2 people and injured 111. Rudolf went on to bomb a nightclub and two clinics that offered abortion services. Rudolf said that the purpose of his attack was “to confound, anger and embarrass the Washington government in the eyes of the world for its abominable sanctioning of abortion on demand.”

Ah, great, the “pro-life” terrorist who kills and maims!

The problem is always crazy individuals and extremist ideologies that try to “justify” killing and maiming innocent people in the name of some utterly misguided “cause.”

Posted by 7glenn | Report as abusive

I take something back I said about you OOTS – this thread is so long and stuffed with ideas it’s exhausting now. It’s very easy to misread this stuff. It’s even easier to miss-write it.

As I understand it, the NAZIs grew during a period of sheer panic over the collapse of the German middle classes too and Hitler was seen as their friend! He talked “true values” and German pride and good sense. He made Christians feel comfortable because they could claim other religious beliefs were all false and the dispirited and nearly suicidal folk could take pride in their achievements and love themselves again. He blindsided a lot of people including the Catholic Church at some levels and presented them with impossible contradictions or choices that were guaranteed to besmirch their inadequate “belief systems” no matter what they did. Hitler’s speeches were never translated in the News Reels here because actually they had many points in common with populist belief systems here. Nations have no “character” and will willingly follow a ruthless leader because they are rather stupid (a country is something like a brontosaurus, or a better analogy would be “Master Blaster” from the Mad Max movies) and can’t afford to go hungry for too long.

To your charge that the present political culture isn’t doing enough to take back control of politics or economic issues – that is dead wrong. Those with power and influence are exerting every kind of control at every possible level and the costs of that influence and control rise as the pressure increases. It leaves out those not able to pay the costs for influence. It isn’t a healthy situation it seems to me.

We all know the symptoms but aren’t explaining the reasons adequately. What worries me, is maybe there are no solutions anymore than none of us can hold back our own eventual deaths. But I am old and can afford to think like that.

And the maddening thing about the present world situation: it is guaranteed that no matter what solution anyone may think a person or party may like – the future is not likely to give anyone exactly that solution or to allow them to continue their present way of life exactly as they would like in all the details they would like it.

It makes me think of something I heard from a Buddhist regarding the need for “dis-attachment” in life. But even they must be having a tough time in the present day? Somehow – one has to be unattached without letting oneself go, or letting everything turn to s**t.

I think what I just wrote could be called “words to live be that aren’t really all that helpful in living by”. But that isn’t my fault. Any solution from the past – especially the toxic solutions, probably already found their antidote in the present. At least I hope so. Hasn’t that been one of my tactics? Those comments you claim are biter and resentful.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Some very weird comments here, the most incoherent and off topic probably being the one about the supposed “ethnic architecture” of the Italian, French, and Irish. Weird.

Anyway, one thing I’ve noticed that both left wing ideologues and right wing ideologues (and/or those influenced in their thinking by them) have in common is that they both have apparently decided that Muslims are ‘brown’ and therefore either to be held in contempt (on the right) or pitied (on the left). This is really odd, especially given the current case where the terrorists, though Muslim, are clearly white (literally and figuratively Caucasian in this case). They’re Chechens, from the Caucuses. If they’re “people of color”, Josef Stalin must’ve been ‘brown’ as well (lol).

You know, there are parts of Europe that are populated by Muslims (parts of the former Yugoslavia, Albania, the area around the Caucuses, etc.). Outside of Europe, the indigenous population of North Africa and the Middle East, particularly the levant, really don’t look that different than Southern Europeans. They’re olive skinned Caucasians. This relatively recent tendency to characterize Middle Easterners and apparently even European Muslims as “brown people” is really sort of reminiscent of Nazi ideas about racial purity. Look, there is no magic International Race Line between Greece and Turkey or Russia and Iran etc. The people lying just outside the political borders of Europe may be a different nationality or religion but they’re not a different ‘race’.

Posted by J.G. | Report as abusive

@curiousinquiry ” … Find me a recognized Muslim scholar who says we should kill and murder people to advance our ideology…”

Ibn Kathir

In his tafsir, Ibn Kathir, one of the most well-renown Islamic scholars, explains the verses further:

“Allah then commanded fighting the disbelievers when He said:
(…until there is no more Fitnah) meaning, Shirk. This is the opinion of Ibn `Abbas, Abu Al-`Aliyah, Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi`, Muqatil bin Hayyan, As-Suddi and Zayd bin Aslam.
Allah’s statement:
(…and the religion (all and every kind of worship) is for Allah (Alone).) means, `So that the religion of Allah becomes dominant above all other religions.’ It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari said: “The Prophet was asked, `O Allah’s Messenger! A man fights out of bravery, and another fights to show off, which of them fights in the cause of Allah’ The Prophet said:
(He who fights so that Allah’s Word is superior, then he fights in Allah’s cause.) In addition, it is reported in the Two Sahihs:
(I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight the people until they proclaim, `None has the right to be worshipped but Allah’. Whoever said it, then he will save his life and property from me, except for cases of the law, and their account will be with Allah.)”
—Tafsir of Ibn Kathir, The Order to fight until there is no more Fitnah
[edit]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam_and_v iolence

Posted by pyanitsa | Report as abusive

@hapibeli,

You suggest: “Teach Americans that the reason they lead the “good life” is due to the sucking resources from the rest of the globe.”

You third worlders are a real “piece of work”. Too uninformed to find or access or refine your own natural resources as Americans and other western nations have developed the technology to do, you stand “outside looking into the restaurant window”.

When our companies partner with you to exchange our technology and expertise for that which YOU DO NOT HAVE AND SORELY NEED, the envy and greed among your dissatisfied results in “cutting off your nose to spite your face”.

So pipelines and foreign workers that would improve the day-to-day life of your people are attacked. Agreements are unilaterally “renegotiated” or, in some cases facilities built with outside money and expertise are “nationalized”. How dumb do you have to be to understand that half a loaf is better than none?

The world is fast approaching a state in which there are fewer and fewer “sole source” resources. Those that will not deal in good faith with western businesses can be left to fester in their own misery until they learn.

Western societies have been first and most successful in substituting petroenergy for the sweat of animals and humans. That has made our lives better. That bell has been rung and will not be unrung.

Maybe you “hate filled and disaffected people” could learn to use birth control pills and condoms so that those fewer born have a better chance at education and a job when they grow up?

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

@PseudoTurtle,

You seem to be a victim of seeing what you expect or want to see. I strongly suggest instead you open your mind to accept and appropriately sort what your eyes tell your brain. Or, to put it another way, don’t let the trees block your perception that you are in a forest. Situational awareness is always of vital importance.

You also resent having your posts commonly ignored, yet refuse to consider that the reason is a hopelessly flawed perspective. If you would fight injustice, first you have to determine where injustice is most oppressive. THAT is the enemy you must target.

There is injustice, both individual and collective, throughout every society but standing in the middle of a circle firing limited ammunition in every direction is about as effective as swinging blindly at a piñata. It just makes you and your concerns look ridiculous. Focus is essential to success, and the rifle reaches further than the shotgun.

Being a CPA and a Plant Controller and Finance Manager in several multinational high-tech corporations for decades gives you unique insight, but it’s very nature limits it’s “scope”. You attempt to rush to and render judgment on human nature itself without meaningfully comprehending it. You then emotionally lash out at others in a frustrated rage. It is your own present and willful shortcomings that are to blame.

There is a vital difference in an “emotional” response and an “emotional” thought process. It is the latter to which I have referred. You can explain a logical thought process easily to others and attract those of open mind to your viewpoint (if it is credible). You and I agree on many points. It is possible to move toward SOME “consensus” based on such agreement.

I have made it a point to weigh All of your words, and find respect for the “wheat” among the chaff. Can you not try harder to do the same? A debate isn’t about “winning”. It’s about achieving a common understanding, and sometimes it’s necessary to “agree to disagree”.

Even if you explain an emotional thought process in such a way as to attract those of open mind to your viewpoint, your “converts” may well march in any direction and even do your “cause” damage. An excellent example would be the abortion “issue”. But I digress…let’s return to the “issues at hand”.

Everyone knows that corporations adopt the accounting methods that will minimize their taxes. That doesn’t make them “evil”. Individuals do the exact same thing. If corporations are more successful in avoiding excess taxation under existing rules and regulations than individuals, perhaps that is because they have greater amounts “in play” which justifies hiring the “best and brightest” accountants and tax lawyers. That’s not “evil”.

Judge Learned Hand held that no man has an obligation to pay more in tax than the law requires. Every individual that takes a personal deduction is engaging in “tax avoidance”. That’s just an emotional word with adverse connotation for something legal we all do every year.

“… job outsourcing, job “insourcing” — which is the real underlying point of this article, and is the direct result of importing cheap labor to increase their profits — immigration policies, taxes, trade and banking are nothing more than a means to an end. The name of the game is profits for [corporate] shareholders.” Well, DUH? Profit is NOT a four letter word. Businesses are “in business” to make money, not solve the social problems of the world. It is for governments and their regulations to harness one to the other.

“We attempt to export our “culture” to the Middle East…whose peoples see our materialism as an anathema.” Well, if those people “value” and prefer their present relative ignorance, poverty, and hopelessness (not much of a market for HATE exports today), I’m certainly willing to go along.

“Social Darwinism (i.e. survival of the fittest)” has been the case as long as man has existed. Get used to it. You’re not going to change it and neither is anyone else. It’s human nature at it’s most predictable.

“…we must first understand there is a serious problem, determine the root causes of that problem and then be willing to do what it takes to resolve it.” Agree with you completely on this, without qualification. “Change our government to a system to include term limits for political office and make lobbying illegal. I’m with you! “LOBBYING IS LEGALIZED BRIBERY OF OUR PUBLIC OFFICIALS!” No argument. What’s your point?

“EVERYTHING that happens in this nation is a result of what our government does, the laws and regulations it passes…”. Once again, I agree with you completely, without qualification. So why can’t we agree that an unaccountable GOVERNMENT expanding like a financial cancer is the “problem”?

“There IS a direct connection between the wealthy class and what is happening to this country.” Nope. Fail. If you could press a button and every one of the current “wealthy class” would drop dead, by the time the next “survey” was out there be a completely new “wealthy class”.

In any society of any time there has always been “the wealthy” who have held power or there has been power which has accumulated wealth. These are two ends of the same rope. It’s not “personal;” as you would make it and your incessant ranting against human nature is simply noise that will never do anything but deflect attention from fights that CAN BE WON and SHOULD BE FOUGHT INSTEAD.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

@J.G. – You must be blind then! Take a look at the photos that begin this article!

MY parents were born in a town with as many ethnic divisions as any ME neighborhood but they were not hopelessly or mindlessly wedded to them: except they were primarily European ancestry and largely Roman Catholic working class backgrounds. It is a pity so few value the contribution the arts make to a society and many in Waterbury, CT may appreciate the fact that the churches in that formerly thriving mill town were actually designed using motifs and plans that were reflective of the ethnic groups that comprised the majority of the various neighborhoods in which they were built.

The buildings didn’t reflect a hard and fast rule but if you scan the horizon as you drive through in on I-84 you can see a large French Gothic granite pile with spires and a dome looming over what was formerly the French speaking neighborhood and was even called The “French” Church, but is properly called Our Lady of La Sallette, You drive within feet of a little jewel called “Our Lady of Lourdes” but was actually called the “Italian church” by my Grandmother because it the parish church of an Italian neighborhood. The interior is so like churches one would find in southern Italy it looks like a transplant.

Downtown, the basilica type church called the Immaculate Conception was not a parish church but a kind of central church and served the Catholic High school and Convent but is perhaps the only Church in the US patterned after a famous church, Il Jesu (the Jesuit mother church in Rome) and sits on one side of the Waterbury Common. It was the most expensive and monumental church built in that city in its day.

Diagonally across the common from The Immaculate Conception is the Episcopalian Church, I think called, St. Thomas. Spotting the hills the overlooked the valley are other Protestant and Catholic Churches that all tended to be based on 19th century gothic revival architecture and there is a Synagogue near the Immaculate but I can’t recall exactly where. It must not have been a large community because it wasn’t a very conspicuous building. I don’t live in Waterbury and am trying to reconstruct this image from memory. Waterbury was comprised of numerous ethnic neighborhoods, Hungarians, Poles, Germans, French, Irish, etc. and even the more affluent and established Anglo-Saxon Protestant descendents of the colonial founders. Waterbury managed to peacefully absorb tens of thousands of immigrants to work in the brass mills during the early part of the 20th century and didn’t expect them to squelch their cultural differences. In fact they gloried in them.

My point – for the hard of noticing, that is – The US managed for over 100 years to live with conspicuous ethnic and cultural differences and they never once, in Waterbury at least, cut each other’s throats and actually grew to old age and acceptance of each others differences. The churches were visible symbols of that acceptance.

There is, or was, a little Bethlehem/Jerusalem model and an illuminated cross, that stood on one of the hills there for years. Now I think there is a Menorah in the common and maybe they still do a nativity set on the holidays? Why not? The difficulty Muslims may have is due to the fact that their holidays aren’t at the same times as the Jewish/Christian holidays but no one even knew what a Muslim was at the turn of the century and hardly anything at all even by the 1950s. If Muslims are having a hard time gaining acceptance it’s perhaps because this country is past it’s glory years and entering it’s decadent phase and people are not willing to stop clinging to their old roots in favor of some more optimistic and growing future and the country is now the home of people who either can’t stand memories of their own backgrounds or have given up on the prospect of being better off then their parents? The more I learn about the Muslim world – the most conspicuous difference I really see is one of language and terminology and religious history. It takes some study but so did RC and protestant sects require some education into their ideas.

Perhaps now, all they see in the future is a threat? Children are the most provincial and parochial of all. Adults should be able to understand cultural differences and should somehow understand all the world religions and their primary concepts simply as the required stuff of being civilized and informed.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

As the photos with 8 years boy dead, they said that the bombs did explosed within 2 minuits by 2 times as 12 seconds diffents. The photos of elements of bombs show the mterial can recive to remote control as like to R/C car or airplain.
So this bombs can play only the others cause of the 2 suspenses were very occupied for running from that place.
And I think, after disposite the bombs, that someone made the control to explosion out of that street, so he is one of the others of organisation.

Posted by astoriafm | Report as abusive

Two brothers of that terror of Boston were just as like to dispositor or arrangement, but the of terror`s Org. is different.

Posted by astoriafm | Report as abusive

READ the Qur’an as I have. Your eyes will be opened.

A few gems from the book of peace. Right out of MY copy.

“Slay the unbelievers wherever you find them.” Qur’an 2:191
“Make war on the infidels living in your neighborhood.” Qur’an 9:123
“When opportunity arises, kill the infidels wherever you catch them.” Qur’an 9:5
“Any religion other than Islam is not acceptable.” Qur’an 3:85
“The Jews and the Christians are perverts; fight them.”… Qur’an 9:30
“Maim and crucify the infidels if they criticize Islam” Qur’an 5:33
“Punish the unbelievers with garments of fire, hooked iron rods, boiling water; melt their skin and bellies.” Qur’an22:19
“The unbelievers are stupid; urge the Muslims to fight them.” Qur’an 8:65
“Muslims must not take the infidels as friends.” Qur’an 3:28
“Terrorize and behead those who believe in scriptures other than the Qur’an.” Qur’an 8:12
“Muslims must muster all weapons to terrorize the infidels.” Qur’an 8:60
“I shall cast terror into the hearts of the infidels. Strike off their heads, strike off the very tips of their fingers. Qur’an 8:12,
“Those that deny Our revelations We will burn in fire. No sooner will their skins be consumed than We shall give them other skins, so that they may truly taste the scourge. God is mighty and wise.
Qur’an 4:56,
“Men have authority over women because God has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because God has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and forsake them in beds apart, and beat them.
Qur’an 4:34

And, don’t forget the boss:…

Mohammed promised his followers seven heavens in which:

They are to cohabit with demure virgins…as beauteous as corals and rubies…full-breasted maidens for playmates…in the gardens of delight…. They’re to lie face to face on jewelled couches, and be serviced by immortal youths…young boys, their personal property, as comely as virgin pearls…. We created the houris [dancing girls] and made them virgins, carnal playmates for those on the right hand…. We are going to wed them to dark-eyed houris. The Qur’an 55:56; 55:58; 78:33; 56:12; 52:16-17, 24; 56:35-38; 52:20]

Posted by MUSVMTR | Report as abusive

The photo with 8 year old show the bag colar as black,
but the street video`s shows his bag colar as white.
And first explosion was broken into the cloud near shops, but second explosion was broken front of baricate near 8 years old boy.
So stange, the other explosion(3) did explosed as siries far from 2nd place or 1st place of near goal.
The 1st place are into the cloud by inside blue street cutain`s, And the terrors Boston have to analyse more careful.

Posted by astoriafm | Report as abusive

Bad news. Saturday at a garage sale I spoke to a lady (obviously Muslim) and asked about how she felt about the bombing in Boston. She said it had nothing to do with Islam. I asked if perhaps the hate and violence in the Quran wasn’t a factor. She said the Quran only teaches peace. I asked how she felt about Mohammed’s many attacks on his neighbors and she started walking away. Not giving up, I asked about the persecution of the Copts and her last words to me were “Go to hell!”.

It is never Islam. That is why it will not get better; that is why there will be more bombs, murder and suffering. Muslims are incapable of reflecting on Islam or being honest about their ideology or even their own actions. We are doomed.

My point was is that is absurd to discount the propensity among Muslims to not only carry out deadly acts of terrorism, but to be responsible for discrimination and oppression in those countries where they dominate. This is just a matter of facts and statistics. Why must so many treat any linkage between oppression, human rights abuses, and violence, on one hand, and Islam, on the other, as a subject that is entirely irrational and off-limits? It is like the young Saudi blogger imprisoned because he tweeted (about Mohammed) that he “didn’t like everything he did”. He wasn’t even given a chance to explain – just the though of saying anything unkind about Islam or Mohammed is a crime. Do we want that here? If one is not honest about a problem, any problem, it will not be solved.

Maybe I am right, maybe I am wrong. One thing is certain: The thousands of dead bodies from NYC, to London, to Madrid, to Mumbai, to Islamabad, to Baghdad, to Karachi and now Boston deserve more than silence so that peoples’ feelings are not hurt.

Muslims need to be accountable for the hate and violence they do. The “Its only a radical few” doesn’t hold water when the fact is that in every society where they dominate, they oppress and discriminate against non-Muslims and even other Muslims.

I don’t believe that the Muslims in the US are any different from their brothers and sisters in Egypt, Pakistan, Iran, Malaysia, etc…. If they could, they would impose their vile beliefs and practices.

Say what you want, but the two brothers were just doing what Allah commands in Quran 9:111 (Even if the so-called ‘moderate’ Muslims pretend to be unaware of that verse).

Posted by kactuz | Report as abusive

@shiv88 – lest you get away with it – you are ignoring Hinduism’s own history of intolerance and extremism. It took the Hindu cult of Kali to create the “Thugs”. The violence and bloodshed during India’s partition was coming from both sides. Ignorant people tend to kill first and ask questions later. Wasn’t the point of Gandhi’s life that he would have rather died than take someone else’s life and he advised his followers to live life the same way. He was even willing to commit suicide by slow starvation.

Most of the arguments above are about trying to come up with valid excuses to have their cake and make sure no one else can have a piece of it. Supremely selfish people, who frequently lie to make their points, tend to proffer them. They all dance around the issue of money, income, control, and power and try to underplay their role in social interaction. That is what the conflicts of the last ten years have been about. There has been no valid reason to attack the ME regimes in the name of stamping out Al Qaeda like organizations because in fact, it actually made them stronger and more ubiquitous and this country has created a perpetual motion machine that can fight what it always wants to fight so it always has something to fight. The stated aims aren’t nearly as important as the spin offs from that fight. .

There isn’t a political, religious or cultural tradition on this planet that can’t claim at least a few episodes of violence and “extremism” in its history. They are usually made up of “extremists” because no one knows what the “limits ” to anything really are? The law is the most objective limit and more or less what we cling to. Extremism in pursuits of careers or creative activities is often rewarded, actually.

In fact one can’t successfully define extremism unless one can define moderation. Just try to define the perfect state of moderation in even the simple things first and then see how far you get on complex issues?

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

@OOTS – you are way off on th Jewish issue and the NAZIs drove them out of German life by making it illegal for state or private organizations to hire them. When they were reduced and powerless, the state than declared them human garbage and tried to destroy them and even their memory. And they had to hide all the murder because they knew it would stink in most decent Germans nostrils – literally. A variety of exclusionary laws made it impossible to legally fight their reduction. You are dead wrong about their fault in their own demise.

The NAZI’s operated by terrorizing and making everyone in their control very defensive of their life and liberty. They forced conformity and buried it all under propaganda and lies. And their political leaders were thieves and swindlers who made damned sure they got the biggest share of state wealth and power.

I don’t personally like the state of Israeli and think it was a big mistake – but I understand how the NAZI regime operated a lot better than you do. And every time I hear such flamboyant praise of cops and military people my skin crawls. If so many here despise too much civil law as intrusive they are brain dead to praise those civil society hires to do its dirty work.

The isn’t anything wrong with Islam, the dumber adherents should just learn that they are not the only religion on the globe and they will have to learn to live with other religious groups just as those had to learn to do the same. But I have to admit, Waterbury, CT wasn’t much of a role model for cross religious toleration. But in Europe that cultural juxtaposition would have been remarkable even if they all claimed Catholicism as a religion. When times were tough the extremist in all religions tends to come out as a defense strategy.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

@paintcan,

You do have a problem keeping those pesky facts straight as you drift in and out of reality. It is no wonder you find it “…very difficult to write effectively. I still can’t get it absolutely right!”

All I said on “the Jewish issue” was that “shocked and saddened” might have been the reaction of ordinary Germans to the increasing control “…of the Nazis in Germany as Jewish friends “disappeared”.” “…not enough Germans timely expressed their concerns and opposition…”.

Do even YOU understand the “point of much of what you feel necessary to express? “I take something back I said about you OOTS…”. Well, take your pick from these pearls of unfounded, disconnected idiocy and let me know which you want to “take back”:

“OOTs always blames the victims. I was convinced he spoke like the NAZI party the first time we crossed keypads years ago. Sometimes I hate the very electrons he floats on and we both type into!”

As you already know, all that “hate” really messes up a mind!

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

Lest just face it OOTS – you think you are a better writer and thinker than you really are. It wasn’t clear what “they” stood for – the Jews may have noticed disappearances too and couldn’t say. I’ve understood that all segments of the population were cowed by the military dominance of the Reich and it’s ubiquitous secret police. Something many like you seem to praise or you never seem to complain about it.

To be honest – I only skim you comments because most of the time they are boring and you just keep repeating yourself. You haven’t said anythig new in at least 4 years. Yoyr comments are embodiments – every one of them – of smug middle class mediocre complaisance. Rather like the German folk – many who didn’t know what was going on regarding mass arrests. And many bought the propaganda and believed the garbage the regime was feeding them. You don’t understand it still – Germans could not talk back to the party or they too would incur the wrath of the authorities. They would be considered sympathizers and bring down the spiteful questions regarding their mental or moral fitness as you just did to me. You are the retread and more modern equivalent of the German folk. Even a famous composer like Richard Strauss had to lie low. Peer pressure is more oppressive than state sanctions actually and that is what most people today conform to. The fifties in this country was very like that too if one had unpopular political opinions. You foolish and insincere old fraud to call that “hate”.

I am not the one constantly complaining about a country overrun with unworthies or “illegals” either – That’s your usual “rant”. You are the only commenter on this site that has ever recommended repeatedly that the less than affluent should see to it they don’t have as many children. See to your own difficulties and inconsistencies of point of view.

I started to “take it back” until I read further and changed my mind. You actually started to look more humane the Pseudoturtle. I should have deleted the line. Consider it deleted.

And the reason more Germans didn’t do what you said was that so many of them were convinced that they were “good honest hard working German folk” and the country had too many of the wrong type and they were crowding the “good Germans’ out. That is the national anthem of OneOFTheSheep Land and the cringing complaint of all those who tend to think they deserved better than the country gave them. And you are a very viscous opponent who seldom ever offers new facts but is constantly rethreading his own tired philosophy of life because he never really was a broadly read or educated person and has more than his share of difficulty with “reality”.

I “hate” prejudice and have felt it. But that’s something of a contradiction itself. And the tragic thing about you is you don’t recognize you own but you try to pass. But it is never more than cosmetic.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

BTW – the architecture may be the only honest thing on this page. It is very difficult telling the frauds from the liars regarding values when they stand on legs and not pillars.

What side: “the radical muslins” or the far more vaguely defined forces opposed to them has shed more blood? Can anyone actually count them accurately or does it matter? How the hell will either side know if they won the contest? And the same problem that presented itself after 911 – with whom do the “losers” sue for peace or the victors sit down and negotiate terms of a treaty with? I didn’t and said so repeatedly here, know then and I still don’t.

One thing that starts to look obvious – the more both sides commingle the more they will start to share characteristics and attitudes and even the tricks of their trades.

And this is the top of the heap in shear stupidity. This country claims it is fighting terror and yet all it seems to find is more terror and more extensive networks of terrorists? Perhaps that’s another disconnect with reality there too? It’s own political and economic system is rapidly loosing credibility in the eyes of its own population, and yet it pursues global conquest with missionary zeal – but on credit of course.

And there are people who can’t live without the external threat. It is an industry now when so many others have fled to other shores. While other countries are rapidly seeing to their development and increasing their wealth we are being encouraged to piss away the last strength we have on protracted conflicts, both domestically and abroad. Does anyone but me seem to notice that the planet is playing this country for the arrogant, strutting, gut selfish, power mad and self inflating fool that it is?

My take on reality has been challenged by a liar. Does this country really know what “reality” is anymore?

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

I don’t know if admin will post my comments because they are anti US. One thing these all commentators forget is what credible evidence USA has to prove them that they received some training from terrorists? it is just another drama to insult Islamic ideology! like 9/11, Invade Afghanistan and establish base for Iran! American are dumb fools but we are not we know your CIA plans! most of the commentators have even not read Quran and just giving fake ideas don’t prove USA innocent! How many of you intellectuals know that your American forces invade other countries killed thousands of children and women just to feed on their rich resources.? get the hell out of there! How many of you know that in Afghanistan every day civilians get killed by your USA army terrorists and yet you don’t speak of it because you are part of it? Indians commenting here need to shut up, because we know thousands of Kashmiri Women and children are killed by their occupied terrorist forces and they will be killed also like that in revenge! Indian does not belong only to Hindus! its the ethnic population belonging from every religion! You think that American pastor will burn the Quran in public showing his hatred towards Islam and Muslims will keep sitting in their homes to watch! The biggest acts of terrorism are performed by US army at this very moment in every corner of world! Who gave rights to USA to invade other countries and do killings??? We have nothing to do with your way of life, do what ever you want to do, but stop terrorizing Muslim world and USA will not feel the backlash! otherwise declare an open war with Islam and see yourself your demise! bet on it!

Posted by Pakpunch | Report as abusive

Nice Drama by US administration to distract focus on Gay law, gun violence and immigration. One suspect is dead and another one fighting for life! and US Govt has started all over rubbish against Muslims again! In fact US is no short of a terrorist itself! Get the numbers how many killed by US terrorist forces all over the globe! Even cant stop laughing when silly US admin threatens Iran of using Nuclear bomb! In fact US themselves are the inventers and testers on Japan! Largest weapons exporter and funding terrorist organizations all over the globe! don’t forget one’s freedom fighter is another man terrorist! This article and foolish comments don’t make a sense because all these people are sitting thousand miles away from the land where US terrorist forces are committing genocide! So feel the backlash!

Posted by Pakpunch | Report as abusive

Please refer to Allah, not God, since the Muslim Allah is a total different concept of the known Jewish-Christian concept of God.

Posted by Kindmann | Report as abusive

“with whom do the “losers” sue for peace or the victors sit down and negotiate terms of a treaty”.

I don’t know what the grammatical mistake was called anymore, but it’s mistakes like (the dangling preposition?) that mark one as an ignorant person actually.

We live with subtle forms of “hate” all the time. I passionately “hate” bad grammar and that is mostly because I don’t always know how to used it properly.

Most of what I say OOTS is over your head and I know it. You are not truly the master of even your own reality let alone anyone else’s!

I often wonder if people like OBL and even these latest bombers are really something like severe critics of “style” or “grammar”? OR were they just idiots and mischief makers for no profound reason what so ever? Does it matter?

IF they were the later, then the country can kiss it’s ass goodbye because there is no stopping them or controlling the problem if the country is simply loosing its balance and sense of proportion or any sense of responsibility. The country will be as wretched as the two headed girl I heard about a few years ago that may be suffering one of her heads going insane.

It was a very stupid mother that allowed that experiment in “nobody tells me what to do” to let that child be born. But the US is that mother in many ways. Now so is most of the developed and developing world. There is no cure!

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Just to make sure I’m reading your logic correctly Mr Rohde.

We’re not supposed to judge all Muslims by the acts of a few “crazies”.

But the acts of a few American “crazies” is enough to judge all Americans who own guns…

Am I missing anything?

Posted by CaptnCrunch | Report as abusive

@CaptnCrunch – the arguments the usual NRA supporters seem to present – usually tinged with paranoia) and the fear that the government is going to enslave them or render them personally defenseless, suggests that more than a few “crazies” populate the NRA.

I really wonder what good a gun would be at the finishing line during the Boston Marathon? Will the future mean back packs are something that should be shot on sight?

And every weapon seems to be met with an equal and opposite reaction in countries we always assume are easy pickings.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Actually Mr Paintcan, I am firmly in agreement with Mr Rohde. Demonizing many for the actions of a few is a sign of a weak mind and unreasonable fear.

Why do you fear me as a NRA member when I have done you no wrong? Let us punish criminals as we catch them and leave honest citizens to the legal toils and pleasures of each of our own lives.

Posted by CaptnCrunch | Report as abusive

Actually Mr Paintcan, I am firmly in agreement with Mr Rohde. Demonizing many for the actions of a few is a sign of a weak mind and unreasonable fear.

Why do you fear me as a NRA member when I have done you no wrong? Let us punish criminals as we catch them and leave honest citizens to the legal toils and pleasures of each of our own lives.

Posted by CaptnCrunch | Report as abusive

CapnCrunch – I don’t fear you or the NRA. And that’s the truth. I only think the NRA is full of very paranoid people seeking to buy and sell a line of “personal defense merchandise” that is a grave risk to everyone and that serves no good or rational purpose. You ask a very juvenile question. It’s also using a kind of faux psychology and you aren’t very good at it. It is also very far from the thread.

Frankly – I am used to government regulation and don’t own a gun and probably never will. But I am considering suicide as the “affordable alternative” to crushing healthcare costs. So if I ever get a gun it will be for my last trip “outta hear”. That’s if I can’t figure out a less messy and traumatic way to exit “gracefully”. You get the picture? Ideally, I’d just pass in my sleep without aids of any kind. I’m lucky I think – I never caught Aids either.

What I do fear is the spark that could ignite the “room full of gasoline”, so to speak, that would set the entire country – Iraq style – into a blood bath that makes the last moments a screaming nightmare. The fact that random acts of violence are becoming more common is almost like karmic payback for the USA’s not so beautiful last ten years of nearly mindless exported warfare in the name of national prestige and global control. Too many people reach for the guns because they haven’t got the brains to reach anything else! They also know their prior dealing with their enemies was too rotten and underhanded, that they really have no recourse to any other solution than violence. Isn’t that so often the case?

What would you rather do: exit your last moments of life voluntarily or struggling desperately with thousands of others to avoid the inevitable and paying through the nose for every additional day of your life? I have the definite impression that the NRA is full of “struggler’s to escape the inevitable and the exist and they don’t care what bills they cost themselves or others to pay. Suicide looks so attractive versus a protracted and very expensive “dying process”. Not even Kubler-Ross could make me feel comfortable about the bills. It could cost more to die each year than I ever lived on.

BTW – the USA (and certainly the NRA)is not composed of mature men and women for the most part. It seem to be full of very spoiled, pampered and immature consumers who have been led around by their noses by government, corporate, and private advertising until most haven’t got the foggiest idea what their core beliefs or honest values really are.

One thing the NRA seems slow to recognize is the fact that our society is very interdependent and the majority cannot live without the highly technological system we have.

That’s why so many are afraid of Muslims or any other religious organization. It has never helped matters that the religuious organizations themselves have neven really had such an astounding take of values either or the necessities of modern life.

So frequently society is a game of the blind leading the blind. It’s never a comforting thought to think that so many of those blind men are armed to the teeth. Why should anyone expect a greater sense of responsibility from gun owners than so many show anywhere else in American society?

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Excuse me – “Outta here” – spell check doesn’t catch homonyms and my eyes are still garbage.

Even if I owned a gun, I don’t think I could hit anything beyond 20 feet anyway.

I am not a Muslim and have no intentions of becoming one.
But I saw a very nice Canadian show on Hulu called “Little Mosque” and I would have no difficulty calling people like that my Neighbors. I’d actually feel a little embarrassed. They seemed so much more earnest than I am.

A mosque in Waterbury would be just another beautiful ornament on the skyline. They should be so lucky to get a Hindu temple. Those people still use carved limestone to produce intricate sculptural and bas relief decorations that would “blow you away” without high explosives or ammo clips.

But if I don’t get my glasses upgraded regularly, I won’t be able to see them.

I wish people made better public prayers. Architecture can be a very memorable “prayer”. But I realize that is not the essence of a faith. Most people love their houses more than any other type of structure and it makes for an easier transition from culture to culture.

I miss Theresa of Calcutta. I’m tired of listening to blow hards, windbags and rigid, conservative, hard-ass Popes.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

@paintcan,

“What I do fear is the spark that could set the entire country – Iraq style – into a blood bath that makes the last moments a screaming nightmare.” “Too many people reach for the guns because they haven’t got the brains to reach anything else!”

So with what else will you defend yourself with as circumstances may require? What’s your plan? Plead loudly, cry, bleed a lot? Who you gonna call for help? The cops will be busy with many higher priorities than the safety of your miserable butt.

YOU and all like you deserve NO pity for whatever they suffer as a direct result of conscious and deliberate inaction or inappropriate meekness. You spoiled, pampered and mentally immature “future victims” cannot depend on the police or anyone else to guarantee your silly security if and when widespread civil insurrection occurs.

No one will care about YOU at that time but YOU, trust me. If you have no gun to use when and if one is needed, it will be solely because you did not use the brain you have to prepare for the “worst”.

Choices have consequences. Only those deficient in imagination do not fear their own “personal worst”.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

OOTS – Whether or not you have a gun is not necessarily going to help either. You’re just a terrified old man afraid to die as you get closer to the inevitable. One stray bullet in a time of chaos and your preparations would be useless.

Your comment is entirely psychological projection.

You and many like you are like a man so afraid of the cold of winter he stored tons of wood in his own house too close to the stove and then accidentally burned it down during the first cold snap.

You also have no imagination except that which feeds your fears.

“Choices” may have “consequences” but you are very vague as to what choices actually match which consequences and you also realize that many may not agree on how you thought “consequences” actually matched the “choices” you think it is was so important to make “correctly”.

You may actually believe a lot of false matches.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

“YOU and all like you deserve NO pity for whatever they suffer as a direct result of conscious and deliberate inaction or inappropriate meekness.”

I forgot to add. You really aren’t the type to waste pity on anyone else anyway, are you OOTS?

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Empathy Mr Paintcan, an entirely different creature than pity. Circling the wagon back to Mr Rohde’s op-ed, if we can feel empathy for others the world becomes a better place because we will not hurt those whose pain we feel ourselves.

As to death, no life has a happy ending but we can certainly take pleasure in the journey and bonus points if we help make other’s journey enjoyable as well.

Better men than I have gone before me and I’ll not moan and wail when my time comes. Nor will I rush it and neither should you.

Let us all endeavor to be positive forces in the time we’re given as David suggests.

Peace.

Posted by CaptnCrunch | Report as abusive

@CapnCrunch -Why is empathy different than pity?

I wasn’t asking for it in my comment. I’m just cheap and can’t pay for it anyway. But OOTS and many others would add wood to the fire and go down shooting at all the people he or they don’t think deserved to live. Do you think OOTS agrees with your hope?

He doesn’t describe bravery or going down with a fight as much as getting even for suffering that may only be in his imagination or against his own enormous sense of entitlement. But if he got himself blown away in a last stand to preserve his old manse – I think I would feel pity.

I would take my aging and already aching carcass out of the picture, especially and probably, in a time of chaos. I’m 62 I’m not likely to be much help at whatever the shooting is about, and never have been much of a joiner. There is quite a menu of different priorities and a wide variety of hit-lists, no doubt. I probably wouldn’t be “empathetic” with the “right” group, anyway.

I whole-heartedly agree with “empathy”. Just reading a good novel or listening to an Opera can be an exercise in that. But I can still have room for pity as well. The trouble with pity is it tends always to be a little self righteous. Is that what you’re saying? But I feel pity for chipmunks that get run over or the cat I mistakenly hit with my car years ago. What else can one feel? Neither creature deserved what they got. They had their limitations.

What is inappropriate meekness? Meekness never seems to be the excuse for war or an industry based on it. That industry has never been my employer. The last ten years in Iraq and Afghanistan has not been about empathy or pity, it seems to me. It was motivated more by fear, a desire for revenge and an expansion of this country’s power, wealth and prestige and it provided thousands with the opportunity to make “a killing” in more ways than one. Empathy can be hazardous to one’s sense of entitlement.

BTW – that last suspect in the Boston bombing just died. I could almost say I am not at all surprised. I thought it was a set up from the start. Now a court will never have the chance to sift fact from fiction and the game of aggression, ubiquitous espionage and lucrative employment to protect national insecurity can go on as it always has.

I suppose one could die just laughing (or weeping) oneself to death?

The thread has never strayed that far form the theme. It’s a very wide theme.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive

Oops – wrong suspect. The Brown student died. He looked so like the other kind. But I still expect the other kid not to make it either. It tend to think the world is more like the mafia than people care to say.

Pity or empathy take a second place to “gotta eat”. Don’t they?

But I really think people should draw the line at cannibalism. Just think what that does to cows.

Posted by paintcan | Report as abusive