Tuesday, April 17, 2007

One Million Blogs for Peace

Kurt Vonnegut, may his memory be for a blessing, was asked in 2003 about the anti-war movements of the Viet Nam era, and the current anti-war movement. He said the following:

"When it became obvious what a dumb and cruel and spiritually and financially and militarily ruinous mistake our war in Vietnam was, every artist worth a damn in this country, every serious writer, painter, stand-up comedian, musician, actor and actress, you name it, came out against the thing. We formed what might be described as a laser beam of protest, with everybody aimed in the same direction, focused and intense. This weapon proved to have the power of a banana-cream pie three feet in diameter when dropped from a stepladder five-feet high.

"And so it is with anti-war protests in the present day. Then as now, TV did not like anti-war protesters, nor any other sort of protesters, unless they rioted. Now, as then, on account of TV, the right of citizens to peaceably assemble, and petition their government for a redress of grievances, 'ain't worth a pitcher of warm spit,' as the saying goes."

Yesterday, on the campus of Virginia Tech, we witnessed the worst mass shooting in American history. Television was on this immediately, and that was the complete focus of news. Even Olbermann dropped his "Worst Person in the World" and "Oddball" features in light of the tragedy. Gonzo has been put on hold, in light of the tragedy. But it strikes me that the tragedy of this mass murder has developed into the kind of media circus that television loves. Vonnegut was right: television doesn't like anti-war protesters unless they are rioting. As long as there is blood, the cameras are there.

I cannot make sense of a senseless act - a man walks into a dorm, shoots two people; two hours later he walks into another building on campus and shoots as many people as he can before turning the gun on himself. I cannot make sense of this, any more than I can make sense of the hatred and fear that the Bush Administration uses to fuel their own agenda. Is it the climate of our nation that allows a young man to shoot so many people? I don't understand.

I grieve for the families of the victims in yesterday's shooting rampage. I grieve for the families of the victims of our senseless war. I grieve for our nation, as our soul struggles for survival. And in my grief, I pray for peace. I pray that good, and decency, will prevail.

If you haven't yet joined One Million Blogs For Peace, what's stopping you?

cross posted at The Fat Lady Sings


pissed off patricia said...

I could not believe the number of media vultures who were on that campus last night. It was awful

Donnie McDaniel said...

This goes to show you what a sorry state this nation as a whole is really in.

Pursey Tuttweiler said...

The media vultures are now surrounding Mr. Cho's parent's home and neighborhood. I grieve for his family too, I suppose they will be vilified and at a loss forever.

This young man, he had a sick, sick mind. I want to know what made him that way, I really want to understand.

I also want to understand how the United States can as a nation kill, rape, pillage, destroy, and that is okay with so many.

Kurt Vonnegut was right. The only thing that has changed is the media no longer shows violence against the citizens by the government. During the RNC, 2000 people were arrested, thrown into a cage that was constructed and rented by the RNC, left without cell phones or food or toilets, simply because they protested. It was brutal. Brutal. Where were the national media? Silent, Silent.

In Hutto, Texas a detention center has been set up for families. Illegal immigrants and their children are jailed. Husbands are jailed in a different facility, wives and children go to the "family facility." It is frightful and terrifying. Families are rousted out of their beds, separated and jailed, kids and all. Working, non-criminal families. Where are the media? Where are they?

America has lost her way, but we can help.

I signed up today. Only 391 so far. Keep pushing.

Coffee Messiah said...

Yesterdays event, sad as it was, still doe not come close to the thousands who've died since gwb started his little war games.

I too wonder why so much energy can be given to situations that simply pale to all the other atrocities going on all around us.

Where's all the moral outrage on those issues. If people cared so much about those, perhaps humanity would have a chance.

Alas, as America gets dumbed down more daily, the future simply doesn't look too bright from where I am looking. ; (

Comandante Agí said...

Thanks for the tip - I just joined.


Kurt is the only one who can talk about tragedy and be funny at the same time...except for Mark Twain and his mustach'e. Bless him in the hereafter...

ps will post the "million blogs"

TDharma said...

i just signed up! Thanks for referring to Mr. V. What a great man, what a blessed soul.