The scene Monday afternoon from the Boston Marathon, with blood and carnage caused by two explosions, is enough to drive us to bury our heads in our hands. Or clinch our fists in anger at the thought of some madman (or several) deliberately setting off these bombs in the middle of one of the nation’s largest road races. Or hit our knees in prayer for the loss of life, the seriously injured and the loved ones — all of whom have had their lives turned upside-down.
Or, perhaps, do all of the above as a sickening feeling overwhelms us. The specter of terrorism is back to the front of the line in our national dialogue, though it hadn’t really gone away. Since Sept. 11, 2001, the threat of terrorism has been made all too real to Americans.
When the possibility of terrorism on our shores returns, those old feelings come back like an unwelcome guest. That’s what happened Monday afternoon as runners were finishing the 26.2-mile race’s famed course and thousands of spectators were lined up to take part in one of Boston’s biggest days on the calendar.
We know that at least two died and 50 were hurt following the bombings. First-responders rushed to the scene, looking after casualties, some of whom were missing limbs. Runners, weary from more 26 miles of exertion, stumbled through the chaos. The country watched the carnage from their TV sets.
All of us are left to ponder why. Why would any misguided and evil soul inflict such damage on innocents?