Boston Reaction: Had It With Humanity?

Mourners attend candlelight vigil for Martin Richard at Garvey Park, near Richard's home in the Dorchester section of Boston, on Tuesday, April 16, 2013. Martin is the 8-year-old boy killed in the Boston Marathon bombing. (AP Photo/The New York Times, Josh Haner)
Mourners attend candlelight vigil for Martin Richard at Garvey Park, near Richard’s home in the Dorchester section of Boston, on Tuesday, April 16, 2013. Martin is the 8-year-old boy killed in the Boston Marathon bombing. (AP Photo/The New York Times, Josh Haner)

This piece was originally posted Friday, April 19 in the Huffington Post.

The reactions to Monday’s explosions
at the Boston Marathon are well documented and many.

President Obama acknowledged in the aftermath that we knew little about the explosions at the Boston Marathon, but pledged “we will find out who did this and we will hold them accountable.”

Obama maintained that Boston is a “tough and resilient town,” and that “the American people will be with them every single step of the way.”

The stories of the victims and the brave acts of heroism should be paramount here, but inevitably we ask: Who did this? Why did they do this? Why does anyone want to do something like this?

RELATED — BOMB SUSPECT DEAD, MANHUNT FOR SECOND

One particular reaction that many people resonated with was making the rounds on Facebook. It was from comedian Patton Oswalt:

Boston. Fucking horrible.

I remember, when 9/11 went down, my reaction was, “Well, I’ve had it with humanity.”

But I was wrong. I don’t know what’s going to be revealed to be behind all of this mayhem. One human insect or a poisonous mass of broken sociopaths.

But here’s what I DO know. If it’s one person or a HUNDRED people, that number is not even a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of a percent of the population on this planet. You watch the videos of the carnage and there are people running TOWARDS the destruction to help out. (Thanks FAKE Gallery founder and owner Paul Kozlowski for pointing this out to me). This is a giant planet and we’re lucky to live on it but there are prices and penalties incurred for the daily miracle of existence. One of them is, every once in awhile, the wiring of a tiny sliver of the species gets snarled and they’re pointed towards darkness.

But the vast majority stands against that darkness and, like white blood cells attacking a virus, they dilute and weaken and eventually wash away the evil doers and, more importantly, the damage they wreak. This is beyond religion or creed or nation. We would not be here if humanity were inherently evil. We’d have eaten ourselves alive long ago.

So when you spot violence, or bigotry, or intolerance or fear or just garden-variety misogyny, hatred or ignorance, just look it in the eye and think, “The good outnumber you, and we always will.”

What do you think? Is humanity on the whole wired toward goodness? Is this an intentional, divinely-infused goodness, or a product of evolutionary development, or perhaps both?

We discussed this very thing at Pub Theology DC on Tuesday night, the following day after the events in Boston.

Read the rest of this article at the Huffington Post!

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