Please Apologize to Tucson

I wrote this post as a comment on Faustasblog when I followed a link on What's Hot here on BlogHer back to her rather nasty post and the echo chamber in her comments.  I tried to post it but I got nothing saying it would be moderated or that posts were closed.  So I am posting my response here. 

This will make no sense if you don't first read the post linked above. It seems to me like a partisan attack on a memorial service that took place here in Tucson on January 12th for the families, victims and community that had suffered so horribly at the hands of a madman.  The insensitivity shown by the conservative media, blogosphere, and punditry was shameful and hurtful to those of us in Tucson.  It has cemented my belief that anger and hate rule most right wing thought.  It has cemented my view that we have to be even more tolerant in the hope that a few fiscal conservatives will realize that a perfectly rational approach, albeit not one that i agree with, has been taken over by crude, insensitive, and just plain old mean-spirited groups.  

So, here is my response that couldn't be posted on the site, or so it seemed. 

First, I have my Together We Thrive shirt from the memorial service and I will wear it, proudly, in Tucson -- the community in which the tragedy happened, the community that lost a child, elders we loved, and a young vibrant man who just wanted to make the world a better place.  Our community is a place where neighboring Grandma types take friends' children to community events.  We help each other out.  We will thrive again, after we heal. Mockery of a community who is mourning shows not only a great lack of respect but a pride in hurtful action.  I'm aghast at such cruelty.

Secondly, the community and family wanted to to cheer those who were so strong and saved so many. The cheering began when Law Enforcement and medical personnel began coming into the arena hours before the President of The United States spoke.  There were many speakers before the President. Janet Napolitano and Eric Holder read scripture.  Did you see that part?  Did you bother to watch the whole service?  Did you see all the tears in the eyes of those people who erupted in thankful applause when we heard the leaders of the U.S. comforting us and truly being with us?  

This was for families of victims, and the heroes, but it was also for the community, and unless you were here and lived the context, and felt the pain, and saw that over half the kids in the stadium were just that, young and inexperienced with "traditional" small memorial services (thank heavens for those among us who had not made previous acquaintance with grief.)

Thirdly, don't you think it is tacky to criticize a memorial service or those who chose to attend and grieve and heal?  There were 14,0000 in the basketball stadium and there were just as many in the overflow in the football stadium next door. 25 thousand people came and waited for hours to share in a healing service.  What gives you the right to criticize us?

Together we will thrive as each day is a new one in which to rejoice.

Eric Holder read at the service from Second Letter of Paul to the Corinthians (4:13-5:1) which contained the words:

 "For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed every day."

Perhaps you could learn something from these words?  Perhaps you could learn something of tolerance and the joy of community from Tucson, one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in North America, that has vibrantly blended original American traditions with Mexican and Spanish traditions, with traditions from others among us such as the Yaqui who were refugees from genocide in Mexico, and the Apache who arrived here not long before the Spanish, and even traditions from Americanized European mishmash of Anglo culture from other parts of the U.S.?  

Please show some respect for our community, for the President of the United States, and for the families of the victims.  


Web: N. F. Hill

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