Hand of Ananke

Meandering thoughts, random rhyme and verse, and poetic prose all in an attempt to understand the universe.
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Posts tagged "death"

What events are 
left to be counted
to mark my passing
to measure the length
of my days

Will you remember them
the fits of laughter
the crying jags
the wild road trips
that make a life

Or will I be just an idea
my removal
a marker in your life
something to check off
as finished

Let me be more than that
and keep in mind
each moment
each fight hug and cup of joe
that we shared

Let me be so much more
than an empty seat
at Thanksgiving
or unopened gift
at Christmas

Let me be what I want
for as long as I want
for as long as I can
until I have no option

     As I wait in line at Wegman’s  I come, unfortunately, face to face with someone I had hoped to never see again: Casey Anthony. She graces the cover of People magazine. It does not take long for my head to hurt with the frustration I feel over how much her case has captured the attention of the American public. Why is her child’s death so much worse than so many others’?
    There is not exactly an epidemic of infanticide in America, but it happens often enough that focusing on this one seams at best silly. Roughly once a year you can read your local newspaper and see a case of child beaten, burnt or starved to death by their mother or father. It often only makes the local section of the paper, and when there finally is a conviction or acquittal, it often does not even make the front page of that. 
    Casey, however, came from a “nice” background, in a “nice” community. She is pretty enough to be wonderful tabloid fodder, and oh, didn’t we all eagerly eat at that trough? We fed ourselves fat on outrage and self righteousness. We got drunk on our sudden legal and forensic expertise. Nancy Grace kept shoveling it and we gorged ourselves. This little girl was a “good” victim.
   She was like the off duty cop Troy Davis was convicted of killing. I feel sorrow for this man’s loss, and the loss his family experienced, but would Mr. Davis been given the death penalty had he shot one of the fast food workers in the restaurant he just robbed? Almost certainly not: they would have been “bad” victims. Cops, white cops in particular (keeping in mind I don’t know the race of Mr. Davis’s victim), are more valuable than the rest of us.
   There are good and bad killers as well. The Airman that accidentally targets a small village is a good killer. The mugger than stabs someone to feed their addiction is a bad one. The “spoiled party girl” that allegedly kills her daughter is a bad killer, the insurance company CEO that signs of on policies that lead to the death of thousands is a good killer. Knives are bad weapons, fountain pens are good ones. This last point is important to us, because it lets us sleep well at night.
   Because we don’t want to think how we might be killers. How our need for lower taxes, or cheaper oil, food or other goods might have led to the deaths of our fellow human beings. We don’t want higher taxes, so we don’t have a Single Payer Health System, so people die, because they don’t have adequate health care. That blood isn’t on our hands, oh no, it was unavoidable, they were just unlucky. But they weren’t unlucky. We decided we want things a certain way, so these people died. We can pretend to be hiding behind the curtain of “the powers that be” but that does not change the ultimate truth, that every person fighting for lower taxes has blood on their hands. But that’s okay, because those victims are bad victims too.