22 April 2015

20 years ago


This past Sunday marked the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attack on the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.  I remember having the television on in my grandfather's house, watching news coverage of the event.  It was unfathomable to me that so much hate could be generated by Americans against their government that they felt that they could act out in such a way that would claim the lives of 168 fellow-Americans, many of whom were children at a daycare.

In 2003, our family set out on a trip across Route 66 to see America.  It was important to me that we visited this site.  Here, in the absence of the former building, was a nearly still reflecting pool overlooked by the "survivor tree" and rows of empty chairs representing the victims.

Our son, then almost three years old, knelt down at the head of the pool to put his hands in the water.  That allowed me to snap this photo that captures, at least in my mind, the playfulness of innocence oblivious to what had transpired at the site.  An innocence that was stolen away from the families of the victims.  I truly hope that despite the political viciousness we experience today, multiple times that of 1995, we recognize that we're still one people with the most remarkable promise, and potential for good, that only America can offer.

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