Veni, Vidi, Ventus --
The randomly chaotic and crafty scribblings of a deranged, wannabe artist allowed too many colours in her Crayon box.

Surgeon General's Warning: Some content of "From Pooka's Crayon" may not be suitable for: work, blue-haired little old ladies, the politically-correct, rabid moonbats, uptight mothers, priests, chronic idiots, insurance claims agents, Democrats, children, small furry quadropeds from Alpha Centauri, or your sanity.

Monday, September 09, 2002

On Remembering

It's not that I don't want to remember.

I never want to forget. But it's not just one thing that's the problem.

September 11.

It's a birth day, an anniversary. It's "special" to many people for many reasons, but life went on before, and it will go on after.

Something tragic, unfair, and horrible happened on that day. The thing is, horrible things happen all the time. To Other People. When bad things happen to Other People, it often doesn't seem as important, or isn't even remembered. It was Them, not Us.

But people do remember.

Mai Lai. Pearl Harbour. Hiroshima. Columbine. Fairchild AFB. Rwanda.

Nanking. The Holocaust. Jonestown. Yakaolang. Srebrenica. Apartheid.

The Challenger. Tiananmen Square. Bosnia. Khmer Rouge.

The list has no end. Perhaps it never will.

A few years ago, I was visiting Jon, and one of our trips was to the Smithsonian. (Several of them, including art, cultural history, and Air and Space, as Jon and I try to remember what all we made it to that afternoon)

Jon lost me for a while when we reached the Enola Gay.

I don't know how long I sat there and cried. It is overwhelming, when you see her. Everything hits you at once. Everything is suddenly, painfully REAL in her presence. And it hurts.

People are stupid, greedy, vicious, and single-minded. For every good, there is a corresponding evil. Someone will always want something that someone else owns. Someone will always want to be more in charge than anyone else. Someone will always have different beliefs, different faiths, different ideas of morality. Someone will always disagree with someone else.

And it isn't fair. It never will be fair.

We cannot forget what we as a race have done in the past, in hopes that in the future, someone will think twice or even three times before engaging in conflict. Violence sparks violence. There is no right way to answer violence, when every response seems and feels wrong. It hurts when it happens to you.

What we must keep is perspective.

No one atrocity is more important, more painful, or more vital to remembrance than another. Each act of violence is a failure on the part of us all. Commemorating a single event that happens to Us instead of Them is an act that will always be repeated. It's human nature, for the most part. What happens to Us is easier to feel and remember and is more Real to us than something that happened to someone else, far away.


Should you chose to remember the One, try to keep in mind the Many that came before, and that will come after.

Should you shed a tear for heroes lost, remember the others that have sacrificed their lives for the sake of freedom and peace.

In the end, we have only one world, and we must live on it together.

Some things, we should never forget.

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