Wednesday, September 19, 2007

where were you when...

oj simpson is back in the news. i've only caught bits and pieces of the many and various charges that have been brought against him. i commented to hubby last night that clearly what goes around comes around.

then today i read $2 who had this to say... and i think he is right. let's not give this man anymore of our time. let the authorities do their job and let us leave him to obscurity.

except that this got me to thinking. i always believed him guilty. not because of his race, but because it was clear that he was an abuser and abusers will often times kill those they abuse. the true sin of racism is that it corrupted his murder trial and inflicted new wounds on race relations back in 1994 when it was taking place.

i was in seminary during the trial and watched almost none of it, except what i couldn't escape. i worked in the refectory where we students and faculty ate our meals and remember clearly playing the radio as loudly as we could so that we could all hear the verdict before praying and sitting down for lunch. i think i was the one to pray, though i don't remember what i said.

not long after the faculty at the seminary decided we needed to have some special classes on race and i attended a forum where students and professors talked about the issues with race and racism. one of the professors, who was running the forum, introduced the topic by saying something like this:

"my generation is defined by the question, 'where were you when kennedy was shot?' this generation will be defined by the question, 'where were you when the oj verdict was read?'"

i thought it was a terrible question to be defined by. and then of course we inherited a new question in 2001, "where were you when the towers fell?"

which all begs the question, why can't we be defined by the positives that take place in our world? is it because we have so very few? is it because we disagree on what the real positives are?

can we not be determined by events like the berlin wall falling (anyone remember where you were that day?) or what you were doing during live aid?

i'm a firm believer in the power of positive thinking. i'm an ever firmer believer in the power of positive doing. and while people often come together in the aftermath of tragedy wouldn't life be better if we came together before tragedy struck so that we can ask and reflect back on questions like these:

where were you when the levies were rebuilt?
where were you when the peace accord was signed in the middle east?
where we you when our troops came home from iraq?
where were you when the law was signed that all children have health insurance?
where were you..?

God's peace y'all


CrackerLilo said...

I wish our society could be this way. Guess we need to work harder for it. Why *do* tragedies loom so much larger in our minds, I wonder?

I am trying to avoid all mention of that man, but am so glad to have read your post.

LRNs said...

You may choose to define ourselves by the tragedies or by goodness and mercy of God. Remember not the terrorists and the killers, but the heroes and the saints. Define your generation by your own deeds and by those people and events you cherish.

I remember where I was, certainly. But I also remember where I was when your children were born.

Anyway, that's my $0.02.

2 Dollar Productions said...

That is an interesting spin as it does seem that all the big moments are where were you when something extremely negative happened.

I think landing on the moon is a solid example of a positive moment, but those are still few and far between and I'm not sure why.

LRNs said...

Need more good moments?

It's 1980. Willie Wilson is struck out by Tug McGraw. The PHILLIES WIN THE PENNANT!

Where was I? I was 8! My parents let me stay up. We watched the cars go down 9th st honking their horns.

Oh happy day!

"and vivian followed."

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