“We have met the enemy…

…and they are us.”  (Pogo)

Yesterday on the streets of Tucson, outside a Safeway, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a federal judge, and 17 others were critically wounded or killed by a 22-year old gunman.  Six people are dead, including a child, and many others are fighting for their lives.

In response to this news, my friend sent me the following poem, author unknown.

Doppelganger

“I seem

to  see this stranger

almost everywhere

I do not wish

to frighten you

but you should know

he’s there

so that if you’re ever threatened

if evil’s ever done

you’ll know

it’s him who did it

you’ll know that he’s the one

his looks

are ordinary

but he does things in the dark

he hides inside the shadows

watching children

in the park

he whispers things

in subways

you’d tremble with alarm

i tell you

he will get you

he’s out

to do you harm

i’ve seen him

in the headlines

and on the evening news

i saw him

on the sidelines

when stones were thrown

at jews

and marching in montgomery

pretending that he cared

i saw him wink as though

some old conspiracy were shared

he was in the crowd in dallas

at the close of camelot

i spotted him

on campus when

the students had been shot

in an oriental village

with civilians left to rot

he was hanging out

with soldiers

trading heroin for pot

and he was

smiling

smiling…

last night

i found obsenities

scrawled across my wall

i swear

i can’t repeat

the filthy words that i

recall

and then

the most immoral

damned insulting thing of all

as i read each line

i noticed

his handwriting

was identical

with mine.”

 

Doppelganger is a German word meaning: “The ghostly counterpart of a living person.”

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3 thoughts on ““We have met the enemy…”

  1. Thank you, my friend, for posting this. My hope is that all of us will understand that if one is not part of the solution, one is, indeed, part of the problem. Inside each of us are angers and fears and triggers to respond with hatred. Also inside of each of us is the voice of reason and thoughtful consideration and the desire for peace ’round the world. Let us heal from our wounds, past and present, and never pick the scab.
    Bobbie

  2. Su, How far are you from Tucson? What’s the mood there?
    Hate TV (FOX) has a lot to do with perpetrating such crippling fear and anger especially among young, already confused individuals. Idiotic judgmental bigots like Sarah Palin and Bill O’Rielly work on relentless mind control of the millions of ordinary folks who look to them for the truth and get only recipes for mind altering fear, venomous anger, as for Rush his agenda is to gain as many followers of hate and urge them to insane, illegal solutions telling followers that God wants mass murder. Sarah, Poppa Bear Bill O’Rielly and Rush base their life on the trilogy of hate, fear or anger. Then they make up the story that mass murder is what God wants. I talk to God daily and he never wants murder, God does not have the capacity to hate.

    1. The mood in Tucson is loving, actually. There are a lot of good things happening in response to the event from last weekend. I have been listening to a particular radio station there (the only one I can get) where a lot of positive comments are being put out on the air waves. I think it’s the national media who is creating the ‘spin’ about what’s happening. Perhaps if they just reported the news instead of analyzing it there would be less chaos.

      I think it’s important to have compassion and not to blame, however. In my experience people who act in the way that the gunman did, have some unresolved mental health issue, and the incapacity to perceive in a rational way – at least in a way that seems rational to most people.

      Perhaps when we pray “deliver us from evil” we should be praying, “deliver us from ego”… Those who are different from us, and who we shun from our community, represent those aspects of ourselves we don’t love – they are the “not me”; you know, “I’m not like that”. Yes, we do love our neighbors as ourselves. Trouble is, we don’t really love ourselves all that much.

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