Going Postal and Apple Pie

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Another shooting spree, it’s become such an internationally recognized trademark of American culture that we should now say “as American as Apple Pie Going Postal.”

In this sense, the New York Times is correct in saying that we should not jump to conclusions about this week’s shooting at Ford Hood,

It is always a shock — and a cause for deep sadness — when a gunman fires malevolently at crowds of innocent people. We have seen it far too often: at Columbine High School in Colorado a decade ago; on the campus of Virginia Tech two years ago; at a center for immigrants in upstate New York in April; and in downtown Orlando, Fla., where a gunman shot and killed one person and wounded five others on Friday.

We always come up with a scapegoat to avoid pointing the finger at the violent, dysfunctional character of American society that produces and reproduces these tragic episodes. The fact that Major Nidal Malik Hasan was a Muslim American is no exception; it just gives us another easy excuse to avoid looking in the mirror. Remember how after Columbine the Republicans wanted legislation to publish the Ten Commandments in all high schools so students would know that killing was wrong? As if that were the root of the problem or even remotely constitutional.

Now it must be Islam or terrorism (it was insanity, not religion or ideology, when a right-wing Christian shot up the Holocaust Museum earlier this year). Ironically, it could take a Muslim American adopting the All American modus operandi for us to finally recognize that going postal is a our own homegrown, domestic breed of terrorism, committed by Americans of all stripes.

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2 Comments

Filed under Essays

2 responses to “Going Postal and Apple Pie

  1. Too early for your determinations.

    We don’t know that the motivation wasn’t ideologically related.

    Have to see what comes of information before deciding he wasn’t using religion as his primary weapon.

    So far, the only information has been that he was pissed off about being deployed to the Middle East … not sure what that says.

    On the other side, lunatics exist in every society across the globe; the larger the society, the appearance of greater numbers of lunatics. With the media, this type of story sells, all dirt does, and selling means profit, so who cares what they say.

    Columbine was about the worst sort of tragedy in America; uncaring parents driven by social status and wealth who only have children for tax write offs. On that note, the blame goes equally to both sides of the aisle, because the government needs to get the fuck out of American homes and families … and Americans need to get back to minding their families and quit expecting Nanny Gubament to do it all for them.

  2. No ideology alone could force anyone into killing anybody. Insanity is always a factor.

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