one thing about being technologically challenged is that (as i've mentioned before) i really don't have a clue about who has been reading my blog. so it was a surprise to get responses to my post about the pictures of an allegedly iranian boy having his arm run over by a car from as far away as sweden and the US.
of these, i'd like to mention the american commenter. his wife also received the photographs, and responded in pretty much the same way as i did. ie she picked out all the email IDs from the email she received & sent a reply to them all. i'm putting in a part of her response below, because what has happened to this faith community is so terribly sad:
An example of hatred is that 'thing ' - I refuse to use his name - who shot up our church last year killing 2 innocent people and injuring many others, and was fired up to do this act of terror and violence because he read books and listened to radio and TV talk show hosts spewing their vile hatred on air against 'liberals'. How many others whose minds are on the edge have these media hate mongers riled up? Since I received this email a few days ago, how many people worldwide have already seen it (and other emails like it), believed it, and been fired up over it? And how many have been angered enough to be verbally abusive, or enraged enough to 'take action' against innocent people like that shooter did? Do you REALLY want to be any part of innocent people being hurt? Terrorized? Even killed? Would you spread false rumors about friends and loved ones or is it just ok to spread them about strangers? It takes just a few seconds to find out if a story like this is true or not before deciding to forward or delete it. Who knows how many lives you might be saving - including your own - by just finding out the truth! I dread to think what might have happened had Bobby and I been at church that day.If there is one email worth forwarding, I feel what I have written qualifies. However if you don't forward this on, nothing bad is going to happen. You're not going to loose your teeth, tongue or testicles. But those who have been misinformed and angered by misleading emails wont know the truth...and continuing to forward hateful, false and misleading emails like the one below without finding out the truth behind it, just might inflame someone enough to do something crazy and radical like the church shooting. Can you live with any guilt associated with that? I know I can't.
you can read more about the shooting incident at their church here, and here (the comments to the newspaper article are worth a read, except for the ones calling for the killer to be executed). the killer himself describes the shooting as a hate crime, a result of his loathing of liberals and democrats who he believes are ruining his country.
i just can't imagine how a community would begin to recover from something like this, and yet it appears that they are doing so:
My friends at TVUUC are resilient as ever though. I went to this past Sunday's service, which marks the 60th anniversary of the existence of our congregation. We dedicated the library and the fellowship hall to Linda Kraeger and Greg McKendry respectively, the two people who lost their lives in the tragedy. I think they would have been very proud.
there are no doubt many profound things that could be said about hate speech & inflammatory rhetoric, but i can't bring myself to do that just now. my thoughts are with the TVUUC community. i hope that you find peace and comfort from each other and from your faith.