By refusing to pass even a diluted gun control measure the U.S. Senate effectively restarted the countdown for the next gun massacre. Meanwhile, the bombing at the Boston Marathon highlights the consequences of waging a global war on terror. And finally, congratulations to the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine for publishing letters from alumni who fought in the Civil War and doing it the right way.
Ground Hog Day
This week the U.S. Senate refused to pass even a diluted, watered down, milquetoast version of President Obama’s original, transformative gun control proposals. By virtue of this shameful inaction, the Senate guaranteed that even in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Massacre, and even with the blood of over 2000 gun victims since Sandy Hook still soaking the landscape, there will be more gun massacres and there will be blood.
The countdown to the next massacre has already begun. We know when – it will be soon. We just don’t know where – except that it will be somewhere in America.
Meanwhile the Senate wears its shame like a garish but tattered garment that belongs in the trash heap of history.
As you are reading this the facts surrounding the Boston Marathon bombing are still being sorted out. What we already know is that the bombs employed this week are very similar to the bombs that have been used extensively in Afghanistan and Iraq.
You don’t need to be a devotee of Tom Clancy or Robert Ludlum to make an educated guess that the people behind these bombings have some connection to the global surges of violence. What we also know is that after a dozen years the American war on terror has probably created as many enemies as it has killed and that collateral damage can have unpredictable results abroad – and at home.
We will await further word on the details of the Boston Marathon bombing but it is not too early to once again think about how the American war on terror can be managed in such a way that blowback does not become inevitable.
When the May/June issue of the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine arrived in my mailbox yesterday I held my breath. The cover story featured letters from Dartmouth alumni/students who fought in the Civil War.
I readied myself for yet another glorified romanticizing of the Confederacy by placing letters from the treasonous Confederate soldiers on a par with letters from Union soldiers.
Thankfully there was not a single letter from a defender of white supremacist slavery and for that the editors of the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine are to be congratulated.
The next step would be to remove or amend the plaque at Dartmouth which honors the 73 Dartmouth alumni who died in the Civil War, including 10 who fought for the Confederacy. I cannot imagine a memorial honoring Dartmouth alumni who died in World War II including a reference to alumni who fought for the Nazis.
Hopefully one day there will be an understanding that honoring the treasonous defenders of white supremacy, racism and slavery is pretty much the same thing.
Have a great weekend!