I just posted the following on Facebook.
Twenty years ago today, impersonators of human beings committed mass murder on national television, hoisting their own flag in the charred remains of the incinerated crime scene as if they'd scored a goal at a sporting event.Maybe it was looking at Bovard's post that did it, or maybe it was noticing that Claire didn't say anything today...maybe it was noticing that I'd seen nothing (nothing!) on Facebook about remembering Waco (contrasted with several posts about OKC)...but whatever it was, emotion got the better of me and this just started writing itself.
And they did it to absolutely thunderous applause.
Nobody paid a meaningful price for this crime; several were even rewarded with promotion, and some still exercise power over other people's lives, today, using your money. None of the myriad and shapeshifting justifications were substantiated, yet there has been no apology--not for harassing the survivors, not for all the legal malfeasance and "lost" evidence, and certainly not for "not an assault"ing eighty-odd human beings to death.
By the look of things, they'd get the same applause today, if they did it again. The message "we" have sent them in the twenty years since it happened, is pretty clear: no problem, fellas, you just go take care of those weird folks for us and we'll have your back no matter what you do. (I know what you're thinking: "It's a good thing I'm not weird.")
The most shameful, horrible thing I can admit to in my entire life, is that I was taken by the official story when this happened. Yeah, that's right: the demon that comes for me in the dark is the one that reminds me that I was part of that thunderous applause. My only defense is that I then opened my eyes and looked for myself, and...well, life changes with the realization that it not only can happen here, but DID happen here.
I can't unmake my own shame, nor deny the personal horror that goes with it. All I can do is be perfectly clear in what I would say to those who not only perpetrated mass murder in front of my eyes, but who repeatedly lied to me, from positions of power and trust, in order to get away with it.
You are not forgiven.
Tomorrow I can go back to remembering it differently--the part about people like Bovard, Evans-Pritchard, Browne, and most of all Claire, helping me to save my own life from the simply inhuman thinking I'd taken for granted.