Commentary: Senseless Violence at Boston Marathon

 

JOHNNY FLORES JR/Coachella Unincorporated

 

Gruesome, bloody, horrific, terrorizing.

These are just some of the words to describe the scene at this year’s Boston Marathon. The 27,000 runners probably began the race with optimism and hopefulness – but that changed the instant that two unmanned explosive devices discharged, killing three and injuring dozens near the finish line.

Limbs flew everywhere as frantic runners and spectators ran for safety. Others ran toward the blood-filled scene to help the injured. The rest of us watched our televisions in horror.

Last summer, I pondered the safety of our movie theaters. In early December, I questioned the safety of our schools. And, now as I read through the many eyewitness accounts and watch the disturbing videos, I wonder if sporting events are unsafe.

The Boston Marathon takes place on Patriots’ Day, a Massachusetts state holiday commemorating the Battles of Lexington and Concord. Thousands upon thousands of people descend upon Boston on the third Monday of April, to either participate or cheer on loved ones.

Sporting events have always been considered to be safe and fun. Baseball in the summer, football in the fall, basketball in winter – these are just some of our American sports traditions. Fans come together at venues around the country, watching their favorite athletes compete at all levels and in all sports.

As an athlete myself, I am familiar with sports injuries. But the thought of an athlete or a fan sustaining an injury – or even dying – as a result of terrorism….well, it just doesn’t make sense.

Just like it doesn’t make sense that movie fans in a theatre or innocent students in their classroom lost their lives.

It sounds like law enforcement is getting close to finding the evil source of this latest senseless act of violence. I hope that those responsible are brought to justice.

But there are three families who will never be the same, a city that has been shaken, and countless Americans – including myself – who wonders when the next act of terror will take place.

 

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