Monday, November 9, 2009

The Most Dangerous Players

In the aftermath of the shootings at Fort Hood last week, there has been as much finger-pointing as there has been hand-wringing. 20/20 hindsight never rises to the forefront as quickly in any situation as it does in a time of tragedy. It seems as if everyone has not just an opinion but a solution, which comes wrapped in a criticism (sometimes subtle and sometimes direct) focusing on signals missed and mistakes made.

True confession time. I know none of the principals involved in either the horrible events that unfolded last week at Fort Hood or the day-to-day operation of the base. I am not competent to offer an opinion as to whether there were signals missed that could have prevented the murder of the thirteen people who died at the hands of Nidal Malik Hasan. Being a human being however I am capable of feeling outrage for what this one human being callously and calculatedly decided to do to some of his fellow humans. I am capable of feeling sympathy for those injured and for the families of those who were murdered. I am capable of feeling gratitude for Police Officer Kimberly Munley whose quick-thinking and courage removed the oxygen source feeding the murderous inferno.

Sadly, I am not capable of feigning surprise at yet another example of the truly despicable and seemingly unspeakable way in which those of us who purport to be human beings treat one another. One must have little appreciation for human life to act as Hasan did. To do what he did suggests - to me anyway - that he viewed his fellow humans - including his fellow soldiers - as nothing other than disposable. He is not the first person to act in such a heinous manner. Worse yet, he will certainly not be the last.

Equally sad is how wrong Hasan is about his fellow humans. And how wrong the next incarnation of Hasan will be as well. Alan Carroll deserves better. His injured and murdered comrades in arms deserve better. Hell, we all deserve better.

Whether we ever get there depends upon us. A fairly scary proposition considering that we are the ones responsible for getting us here in the first place.

Here's to better days......for all of us.

-AK

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