What can you say about the tragedy in Boston yesterday. Most Americans are likely at a loss for words in their helplessness. What is there to understand…or to be learned from such events? First and foremost, our enemies will stop at nothing to inflict harm upon us physically and spiritually. Aside from that, courage and determination are our greatest strengths.
I read an observation somewhere yesterday about the national unity after 9/11. I thought to myself those days are long gone. It’s doubtful we will ever see that again in this country. Division and resentment run too deep. That being said, I’d like to be proven wrong….in light of yesterday’s vicious attacks…
The Boston Herald’s Rachelle Cohen offers a perspective on the senseless violence that shook her city…and the nation…
TERRORIST CRIME SCENE HITS OUR CITY
“It was the day Boston lost its innocence. We used to think that the horror that is so commonplace in other parts of the world can’t touch us here — not on Marathon Day, not on Patriots Day, not on a perfect day when the sky is blue and all’s right with the world.
All weekend Back Bay was a neighborhood block party — a celebration for the 27,000 runners who come from all over the world to share our community, our world on this day. On Sunday as soon as Boylston Street is shut to traffic, people gather to have their photos taken at the finish line to capture the moment, to inspire them for the arduous 26.2 miles ahead.
But just 24 hours later Boylston Street — the sight that has always brought joy to the heart of every runner privileged to be heading for that finish line — was declared a crime scene.
A crime scene — in the heart of our town!
We have grown complacent since 9/11. No question about it. We have grown contemptuous of the host of silly rules and regulations designed to give the appearance of keeping us safe, when we know in our hearts that there is no such thing as safe any more.
For a time we put up with mall cops making us pop the trunks of our cars to enter a parking garage and thought, “Oh, really.” But we also knew that those who would cause us harm most likely look for just such “soft” targets. The “experts” have been telling us that for a long time.
We have grown used to having bags checked as we enter Fenway or the Garden. But we also know it’s not dreadfully serious — at least it hasn’t been until now.
Yesterday the usual precautions were taken in the usual spots. Bomb sniffing dogs gave one last check under the stands reserved for credentialed visitors. But who’s to check the retail stores just across the street — the spot where most spectators gathered? It’s not negligence. Far from it. It’s just an impossible task — unless, of course, we want to take a page from our Israeli friends and post armed guards at shop entrances, military at historic sites and major hotels.
Israelis have long known what it is like to face an enemy who cares not a whit whether a bomb planted in a shop or a trash can or under a restaurant table will take out a child or a grandmother — in fact, the more the better. Planting a bomb near a plate glass window assures maximum impact, maximum tragedy.
So yesterday it was our community that was shattered, our community where people died, children were injured, where limbs were shattered, where life changed — forever. There are moments of before and after — red lines that forever divide time and history.
This is one of those moments for Boston.
“We still do not know who did this or why,” President Obama said yesterday, “but we will find out who did this and we will hold them accountable.”
Surely we all hope that is true. Yesterday everything changed. Yesterday my neighborhood became a crime scene. Today someone needs to be made to pay for that.”
Rachelle Cohen is editor of the editorial pages.
I applaud Ms Cohen for having the courage to call it what it is…terrorism. There seemed to be a reluctance to use that term yesterday. What ELSE would you call it?…..Difficult days lie ahead….