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Leslie P Garcia

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Member Since: Aug, 2001

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Another American Nightmare
By Leslie P Garcia   

Last edited: Thursday, January 26, 2006
Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2002

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Terror stalks the American psyche now as never before. . .thoughts on "another American nightmare."

 

            Turning the news on has become a grim undertaking.  News stories from around the world affront sensibilities—the carnage of the Mid East, the genocide, the suicide bombings.  Ideas that separate mankind from the lower reaches of the animal kingdom seem also to fester into the evil that may yet destroy us all.

 

            But back to the news:  the Twin Towers. . .the anthrax attacks. . .the Beltway Butcher. . .where does death end?  When did the United States lose grip on its idyllic vision of safety and security?  Why have the attacks come home so suddenly and so brutally?

 

            Politics must be put aside for the purposes this essay, because fault-finding serves no purpose.  I will not allow excuses to be made for the violence currently taking lives around the nation’s capital; there is no excuse.

 

            That the media debates the involvement of terrorists seems so sadly shallow—of course terrorism lies at the room of this most recent attack.  When men, women, and children are gunned down as they perform the routine tasks of life, when outdoor events are cancelled and children kept home from school out of fear—that is terrorism.

 

            Political or personal, planned or spontaneous, this slaughter of the innocent epitomizes terror.

 

            And the terror is not confined to its geographical home; this nightmare invades hearts and minds all over the country.  One of my fourth graders struggled just today to explain what he had heard on the news, but his comprehension was sketchy.  He believes that the sniper has attacked here locally, and that his family’s safety is in jeopardy. 

 

            The callousness of a reporter describing Linda Franklin’s murder, saying that the killer “capped” her provoked graphic images that tortured me, that kept me from sleeping.  Many years ago, a coward with a gun murdered my brother. . .shot him in the back.   I see vans smeared with blood, or a forensic expert describing “projectiles” without emotion, and all I can think about is the agony and evil being wreaked on the innocent as they just go about their own harmless lives.

 

            Cynics and others with certain “world views” may well tell me that in other countries, such dangers have preyed on the populace for years; some individuals may secretly applaud this humiliation of police and investigative forces. Some with anti-American agendas may even believe that we “deserved it,” in much the way some still blame the victims of rape, rather than the rapist.

 

            But many—most—are outraged at the slaughter, here and abroad.  Most of us understand that to end the terror of this American nightmare, those responsible must be brought to immediate and absolute justice.
 

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Reviewed by Carol Kluz 11/25/2002
Thought provoking article, Leslie. Your final sentence is the solution. Justice must prevail. Regards, Kaz
Reviewed by J Michael Kearney 10/18/2002
Fine writing. /// You ask, "When did the United States lose grip on its idyllic vision of safety and security? Why have the attacks come home so suddenly and so brutally?" /// That "idyllic vision of safety and security" was always just an illusion. Serial killers have always roamed the country, in fact, during the eighties "crack epidemic" brutal, random, street-crime was far worse and more common than it is today. // Your second question about why the attacks have come so quickly and brutally, perhaps one reason is that Israel has always provided a closer, more alluring target for Mid-East terrorists than the USA. Since the Gulf War more and more of those attacks have occurred here or on American interests - the '93 World Trade Center Bombing, the '94 attack on a Jewish school bus in brooklyn, NY, the '97 Al Qaeda attacks on our troops in Somlia, the two U.S. Embassy attacks in Africa in '98, there is even speculation that the '95 Murra Office Building bombing in Oklahoma City was linked to aide from terrorists. There is little doubt that a war over our presence in the Mid-East has been visited on our shores. The irony is that it is the Western (northern European mind) that gave oil its value and enriched the Middle-East. Now adherants of the religion have decided that the American ("infidel") presence in their countries is offensive. A lot of Americans say, "We should swith to alternative fuels and let them drink their oil," but that's only part of the solution. This cancerous threat has to be expunged and that will be a long, arduous and costly job.

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