Letter From New York via Martha’s Vineyard 06 13 2016 Numb but furious. Where have all the flowers gone?

Yesterday, as I suspect most people did, I woke to the horror of the Orlando massacre.  Rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, I kept wondering if I was actually reading what I was reading.

Of course I was. 

Not long ago I emailed a friend, now living in Florida, that I felt furious and, at the same time, numbed.  I am angry and do not know a single thing I can do that will actually help affect any kind of real change.  A New Yorker, both my Senators support more stringent laws regarding guns.  It will do no good to write them.  Obama sits on my side of the issue. 

And any letter I write to a Republican, I fear, will lend no weight.  I have tried.  Somehow I end up on their mailing lists, thanking me for being a supporter.  When Bush was President, I wrote a letter demanding he not invade Iraq.  For years, I received Christmas cards and photos of W. and Laura, thanking me for my loyalty to them.

Same with my local Congressman…

They are not listening.

It is twilight here on Martha’s Vineyard.  A few boats skiff across the harbor.  From where I sit, I can see the Edgartown lighthouse.  I am sipping a glass of wine, lost in the quiet and the beauty, furious and numb.

As I was not needed at Edgartown Books, I headed out in my car today, turning left at the end of the driveway and letting fate take me where it will.  For awhile, as I drove, I listened to NPR programs doing an exegesis of yesterday’s tragedy, the worst mass shooting in the country.

As he holed up with terrified people, Omar Mateen, the shooter, called 911 to let them know he was doing this because he was pledging allegiance to IS, calling the Boston bombers from its Marathon his “brothers.” 

As I listened, the portrait of Omar Mateen was beginning to reveal itself to those who were attempting to figure out what had happened.  He was American born, apparently radicalized via the Internet, probably bi-polar, an abusive husband, worked for a security firm, had been interviewed at least twice by the FBI because of statements he made or actions performed.

He bought his guns legally.  He bought his guns legally, after all that.  He killed 49 people and died himself.  53 others are wounded.

He was offended by seeing two men kiss.  But his parents didn’t think he was unhinged.

Trump tweeted in peacock pride about being right about Muslims except Omar Mateen was born in America of Afghan parents.  He was a US citizen by birth, no act would keep him out.  He didn’t come here perverted.  He was born here and was perverted by God knows exactly what…

He attacked a gay nightclub, Pulse.  It is Gay Pride Month.  It is also Immigration Month.  It was Latin night at Pulse. Kill two birds with one stone?  Hate amplified?

As I drove the island today, I felt lonely, in the way I felt lonely when I was young and watched as Viet Nam unfolded before me and about which I felt powerless until I played hooky from school and joined a march against the war.

We have no marches these days.  We don’t gather together to scream against the violence.  Perhaps that is why I felt lonely today; I have comrades but we do not come together, we do not march together, we do not sing songs of protest together against the outrageousness of the time in which we live.

Sitting here, watching the pink tinged sky while a small boat motors across the harbor, I am still numb and I am still furious.  What do I do with this?

And in the back of my head, all day has been the thought:  where have all the flowers gone?

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2 Responses to “Letter From New York via Martha’s Vineyard 06 13 2016 Numb but furious. Where have all the flowers gone?”

  1. Bruce Thiesen Says:

    They’ve gone to graveyards every one.
    Graveyards
    They’re covered with flowers every one.
    Flowers
    Young girls have picked them every one.

    (The Christmas cards from the White House must have been insulting. Every time.)

  2. tombers Says:

    They’ve gone to graveyards, everyone… And, yes, the White House Cards were insulting and infuriating. Every time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: