I’m an early baby boomer, and the country has changed dramatically in my lifetime.
I, like many, ignore the positives; advances in medical science and development of the computer and internet to name two notable examples.
However, I’ve observed other changes not so positive. Today’s political environment troubles me; I write about it often on this blog. The deterioration of our economic system and the country’s insane tax and spending policies concern me greatly.
I’ve not ignored but chosen not to dwell on the country’s societal and cultural decline, perhaps unable to cope with too much bad news. On any given day dozens of stories report a troubling decline of values that made our society what it is…or was.
In hindsight, I became callous…maybe an unconscious self-defense mechanism to help me deal with the violent, disrespectful and general ugliness of today’s culture.
However, I’ve been unable to shake thoughts of a recent incident in Brunswick, Georgia. I go to sleep and awaken thinking about it, deep emotions of anger, frustration and hopelessness disturbing my head, heart and soul.
Two street thugs, one a thirteen year old minor, are accused of murder. They accosted a mother and her thirteen month old son. They demanded money; the woman didn’t have any to give them. The thugs shot her in the leg. The baby was lying in his stroller. They shot him between the eyes. The baby’s dead.
Merely writing the previous paragraph deeply troubles me.
Dozens are murdered each week; maybe that’s why I’d grown insensitive. Some of the victims are bad people killed by other bad people; others are innocent, but none more so than Antonio Santiago in Brunswick.
Soon the alleged older murderer will be a tried; as a juvenile, the younger will avoid major charges. No one knows what defense the court appointed attorney will mount. Maybe insanity; perhaps the crime will be blamed on the suspect’s sad and deprived upbringing.
But, maybe the Public Defender should claim the defendant is a product of society…one that blurs if not altogether erases the difference between right and wrong. A society where evil is denied, excused or rationalized. A society where inexplicable acts of human depravity are explained. A society whose members feel little or no responsibility for what they do.
If spiritual, prayer is order. If not, a return to human beings’ instinctive goodness must be hoped for.
Antonio Santiago is dead. But, perhaps the senseless murder will capture the attention of decent people.
Little Antonio’s death has my attention and will for a very long time. I am no longer callous.