We wouldn't do that
But hear the Psalmist: "Only in you do I dwell in safety."
Like everyone else, I was shocked and saddened by the carnage in Norway on Friday. I read with horror the first-person accounts of survivors from the island camp and looked with pity on the photographs of white-wrapped bundles placed on the shore. I watched with resignation as the comments began flying: this must have been done by a Muslim; no, he wasn't a Muslim; it was terror; no, only Islamic fundamentalists are terrorists; he is a Christian fundamentalist; no, he is a madman.
And then the difficulty about this camp being liberal or Marxist held side by side with the fact that these victims were teenagers.
And then we heard that Amy Winehouse died. And the comments came again. We could have predicted this would happen; everybody knew she was messed up; she checked herself out of rehab and wouldn't get help; why are people making a big deal out of this addict when all those children were killed?
It made me sad to hear people blaming Amy Winehouse for her addiction and possibly her own death.
But that's what we do. We put people far away from us so that we can put danger far away, too. We wouldn't get addicted. We wouldn't refuse to get treatment. We wouldn't go to liberal Marxist camps.
In our desire for safety and security, there is this sad little piece we ourselves contribute to tragedy: that somehow other people did the wrong thing or went to the wrong place.
And so it goes. This is another verse of the song we always sing. We wouldn't be poor; we wouldn't be imprisoned by mental illness; we wouldn't be addicts; we wouldn't have unplanned pregnancies; we wouldn't grow up in abusive homes; we wouldn't be homeless; we wouldn't be undocumented workers or their children.
We wouldn't do any of that.
Lord, have mercy upon us all.