Saturday, July 21, 2012

Tragedy, Outrage, and Proportion

This past Friday morning, just after midnight, a gunman entered a crowded movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado and shot fifty people, killing twelve.

Americans are rightly stunned and outraged. It is hard to imagine what that middle of the night phone call would be like with a voice on the other end asking you to come and identify the body of a loved one who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

It is hard to imagine the depths of evil in the human heart that led to this.

It should grieve us.

And now, at the risk of being accused of bad taste, I want to take this opportunity that remind us that since that midnight tragedy, approximately one hundred times that number of people have been killed and hardly anyone has batted an eye. There’s no stunned outrage. There’s not a torrent of news article and blog posts analyzing the tragedy. Their names will never be known (in fact, they don’t even have names yet). No one will cry out for laws to keep it from happening. In fact, they will cry out for laws to continue to allow it.


Because very few people, comparatively speaking, care about the thousands every day who are brutally murdered everyday in the “privacy” of a “doctor’s office.” They aren’t surrounded by jokers in masks. They are surrounded by highly educated doctors in masks whose goal is to take a human life.

But the outcome is the same: Dead people.

This shooting is a tragedy. But why do twelve people get the headlines, and the twelve or so that died since I starting writing this won’t even get a grave stone?

No doubt some of you will be offended by this article. You will think I am minimizing this tragedy.

Far from it, my friend. I am not minimizing it at all. I am pointing to a bigger tragedy that doesn’t reach our national (or personal) psyche anymore.

I am pointing that we, as Americans, have no sense of proportion to match our outrage. We ignore the death of thousands while dedicating hours of special programming on TV to the death of twelve.

The media who have shown pictures of bloody theatre goers won’t dare show the picture of a bloody baby brutally sucked from it’s life-giving womb.

It won’t matter to them.

People will accuse me of politicizing the issue. But the politicizing started long ago when politicians distinguished between the value of the life at certain ages. They are the one who have refused to offer the promise of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” to all people. They are the ones who have given into the politicization of those with no regard for life.

Life is precious, whether it’s twelve people in a theater at midnight or twelve people in the wombs of their mothers.

The fact that we get morally outraged at a theater killing is good.

The fact that we do not get morally outraged at abortion is a travesty, a blight on our existence.

May God awaken our sensibilities to the mass murder that goes on everyday all around us.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amen! Very well stated and I agree with you 100%!