Searching For Outrage

In the wake of Loughner’s shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) and 19 other people — six of whom were killed, including a 9 year-old girl — in Tucson, AZ on Saturday, January 8, 2010 I’m left in an odd quandary. Truth be told, I’m searching for outrage within myself but finding only a mild sadness, a lingering frustration, and more than a little ennui.

Obviously, normative American society says that I should be outraged, especially since a child was murdered. That point was made quite clear, though no such clarification was needed.

I am going to unfriend you on FB, don’t take it personally – I am sure you will not. If you cannot muster up feelings for a 9 year old child as collateral damage, then my unfriending wont ruffle a hair on your head.

The somewhat worrisome thing is that I can’t seem to summon up any significant feelings for the murdered Christina Taylor Green or any of Loughner’s other victims. I can’t even seem to call up more than a certain level of disgust with “opportunistic feeding” that been done by politicians, demagogues, and pundits in the wake of the massacre.

So I’m left searching for outrage but not finding any.

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4 Responses to “Searching For Outrage”

  1. Alfie Says:

    Don’t feel bad J I have the same thing going for me. I faced similiar issues when I posted on how fed up I was with the Chilean miner faux joy festival.
    Way too many people want to inject themselves in the grief,joy etc of others and do so not with any honest empathy/sympathy but with nothing but a sheep like selfishness that is rather disgusting to detached viewers.

  2. jonolan Says:

    You make a good point, Alfie. Our society has gotten a bit used to injected ourselves into other people’s lives and deaths. You’re also right that we often do so for purely selfish reasons.

    I’ve also realized, after some introspection, that I had profiled Loughner as a nutjob from my first hearing of the incident and I’ve always felt their actions were akin to natural disasters – a cause for sadness, not outrage.

  3. ichabod Says:

    Hi jonolan;

    We hear so much of this on a daily basis, not personally knowing the victims, it becomes a statistic, nothing more.

    If you knew any of the victims or were close to them, I am sure your passion would erupt.

    We have become desensitized, and maybe not. When living in a country or area where life and death is a daily occurrence, you don’t have time for grieving as survival depends on keeping your wits about you.

  4. jonolan Says:

    Very true, ichabod.

    Also, I and others like me, have been places where the daily level of violence is such that it changes our perspective of what happens here – so far – in the US.

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