One Truth About Tragedy

Readers, surely, not every horrifying event begs a Free-Range analysis, but I did want to say one thing about the Boston Marathon bombings. Beyond simply expressing my disgust and sadness, I’d note that, like so many tragedies, this one was absolutely unpredictable. No one attending did anything remotely ill-advised or imprudent, yet some found themselves in danger’s way nonetheless.

Let’s remember this lightning-bolt quality when tragedies befall others, especially children. We do have a way, often, of thinking bad things happen only to the children of bad parents. When a child is hurt and a parent was not supervising, the go-to emotion is anger at the parent. Blame feels satisfying. It gives some order to the universe.

But the universe, as we were just so hideously reminded, is not always ordered. So it’s best to refrain from blaming anyone suffering a loss. – L

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