Thursday, May 7, 2015

Misfits among us

Something there is that doesn't love a wall, 
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it, 
And spills the upper boulders in the sun...

Robert Frost wrote these words in his poem "Mending Wall."

There are also forces that do not like the walls we erect between wealth and poverty, middle-class comfort and lower-class hunger.

When we ignore the poor, hungry, and mentally ill, we place our own lives at risk.

We think we can sell a car on Craiglist without being killed.

We think we can enter a movie theatre, federal building, or school without worrying about the underclass who are trying to stay afloat in our economic and social order but some of whom are drowning.

When they take us down with them, we are surprised.

If we do not keep our brother, he may kill us.  Even our sister may turn violent.

In a NY Times article on the shooting in Garland, Texas,  on Sunday, Muslim businessman Mohamed Elibiary points out the difference between himself and the two young men who drove from Phoenix to shoot up the anti-Mohammad cartoon event:

"You've got to remember, I live a middle-class lifestyle in a first-world country.  I have plenty of opportunities to express myself and I'm in no way disenfranchised.  People who usually react violently to that have a totally different life experience."

Thank you to reporters Manny Fernandez and Laurie Goodstein for the interviews and writing that went into this article.

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