I’ve waited days to write about the fatal stabbings Friday on the MAX train here in Portland. Like many people, I was in shock. It’s taken me a few days to get a grip. And when I did, it seemed like I didn’t have much to add to the conversation. Maybe, only this:
Like many people, I am in mourning: for the two men who died because they reacted instantly to hate hurled at two young women; for the one man who survived and wept on television as he talked about those who died and the girls they wanted to protect; for those young women, who may have endured hatred before and will never forget this experience; for the people on the train who ministered to the wounded; for the families and friends of all involved -- including the assailant’s mother -- who may be reeling from these losses; for all who must immerse themselves in the incident as they investigate and prosecute the case; for all who gathered at the vigil Saturday night; for those who spoke out -- yet again -- to condemn such acts; for all those who imagined that they would act in the same heroic way and realized what it might have cost them; for those who have spoken out against hatred and prejudice and fear in the aftermath; for city officials trying to find a way forward; for those who argue that this action illustrates the racist elements in our city and state’s past and for those who cannot, will not, acknowledge them; and for those who argue that the public reaction to this violence is racist or that white supremacist demonstrations are at odds with First Amendment rights and for those who disagree on both points.
Then yesterday I woke up to news of a suicide blast in Kabul that killed at least 90 and wounded 400 and wondered how many others died violently here and abroad while I slept. I am in mourning for all of us.