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My Reality Invaded By the Real World

Billosaur (927319) writes | more than 6 years ago

Security 7

So I am at work yesterday afternoon and I get a panicked phone call from my wife because neither of our sons (my stepsons) have shown up from school. Now one has an after-school program he goes to and she is supposed to pick him up at school, but our other son is nowhere to be found. She drives frantically to the school and upon arriving sees no buses anywhere, and more importantly the school is surrounded by police and fire department vehicles. She asks a police officer what is going on and

So I am at work yesterday afternoon and I get a panicked phone call from my wife because neither of our sons (my stepsons) have shown up from school. Now one has an after-school program he goes to and she is supposed to pick him up at school, but our other son is nowhere to be found. She drives frantically to the school and upon arriving sees no buses anywhere, and more importantly the school is surrounded by police and fire department vehicles. She asks a police officer what is going on and he explains that all the kids were evacuated from the middle school to the high school (which is down the road about 3/4s of a mile), but has no information as to why.

The kids make it home all right, but they were forced to evacuate without being able to at least bring their coats, and yesterday was cold and rainy, which made neither of us happy.

When I got home, I went on the school district web site and sure enough, my guess as to what happened had been accurate: someone had made a bomb threat to the school. Now, we live in central NJ, basically out in the middle of nowhere important, midway between NYC and Philly. We're a fairly diverse, more upscale community, and up until yesterday, peaceful.

This was a middle school, for crying out loud! 4th through 8th graders! 1000+ kids! And someone, some moron, thought it would be funny (or perhaps mean, or even psychotic) to call in a bomb threat to the school about five minutes before dismissal.

I hope it was not a kid in the school, because if it was, I want the the child to watch their parents be flayed alive. Yes, I'm that mad right now. I suspect when I calm down, I will only want them stoned to the point of unconsciousness. If it was an adult, they better have a horrible mental illness, because that's the only thing that would keep me from finding them myself and stringing them up in the center of town. Again, when I calm down, I'll probably be human enough to allow them to live, but horribly crippled. I can't say.

I may be in this state owing to the 9/11 flashback I had when I read it was a bomb threat, for on that day, as I sat in my office, stunned and pretty much incoherent to the disaster going on around me, a higher up came through and told each person still there (there were only a handful of us at the time) that someone had called in a bomb threat against our building in Midtown. It didn't move me to leave, because I knew this was more idle threat than actuality, but it pissed me off that someone thought now was the chance to get in their licks while the lower end of Manhattan was smoking and burning. I don't know if they ever found out who did it, and that person should probably be glad I don't know who they are.

I've watched Oklahoma City, 9/11, Columbine, Virginia Tech... seen them come and go and promised myself I would do everything in my power to keep my kids away from those types of events, full well knowing it's impossible to predict the actions of madmen. And now I'm just so pissed off that it's hard to articulate. The world is so full of problems and we live with enough fear of the unknown now that something like this is unconscionable.

I only hope I calm down.

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7 comments

That really sucks (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#22154306)

If you support the idea of any sort of cosmic justice, you can bet that, whether or not the little joker meets justice in this Reality, they will still meet justice.

Re:That really sucks (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 6 years ago | (#22156452)

Well, I'm not sure I want to wait that long... but that's just the current wave of anger talking.

Re:That really sucks (1)

cmacb (547347) | more than 6 years ago | (#22158302)

Stay angry.

I don't see any reason not too. Maybe if enough people stayed angry about it the moral decay we are bogged down in could be reversed.

Our country, along with most of Europe has embraced Nihilism like never before, only now the proponents don't have the intellectual wherewithal to call themselves Existentialists. How much longer before we have a groups of people running for President who are afraid to express a commitment to any firm point of view of the universe? With the exception of two, we have a current crop that claim to have some religious affiliation (nudge-nudge, wink-wink) and who's opinions on any subject whether related to religion or moral issues of any kind, can turn on a dime based on polling numbers. The two candidates who do not apologize for their religious affiliations are treated with alarm by the press who have helped translate "freedom of religion" into "freedom from religion".

Our steady drift toward government-run everything worries me, but if the country seemed to have any sort of moral compass, be it based on religion or something else, I could at least imagine an society that would continue to function, even if extremely inefficiently. Instead we drift toward a larger dependence on central (governmental) authority, while at the same time a populous who rejects ALL authority.

It grows increasing hard to be optimistic. Anger is a good substitute. It gets me to the voting booth, and keeps me from wasting much time following the mainstream media, including Hollywood, both of which getting me to the "throwing things" stage pretty quickly these days.

Re:That really sucks (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 6 years ago | (#22158804)

I frankly wouldn't mind the government running most things if a) they ran them well and b) I thought they were actually representing everyone's best interests.

The problem with the anger is that I am angry so much, partially due to the perfectionism I carry around like a stone on my back and partially because I can't seem to control anything. I worry that I am going to be consumed by it. I know so many who take their anger and turn it into fiery oratory and leadership, and I don't feel like I have the tools to do that. As hokey as it sounds, I see the whole Darth Vader dynamic -- when you have access to some sort of power, any sort, you tread a fine line between harnessing that power for good or allowing yourself to be subsumed by it. Right now I want to revel in my anger and turn it on whoever did this to my family and punish them with old-time, Biblical vengeance.

I don't know what it will take for the indignation of the masses to burn through the social malaise we are mired in and cause people to do something about all the problems we face. I envy our Founding Fathers, because they took righteous indignation and turned it into action and founded a nation. I want the same thing to happen now, only with the people taking back the power that is rightfully theirs.

Grrrr... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22155548)

I don't care. Really, I just don't.

I have more important things to worry about than you or your kids. Like where my slippers went.

Sheeesh!

Ugh. (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 6 years ago | (#22157580)

I'm really sorry you and yours had to go through that.

Re:Ugh. (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 6 years ago | (#22158834)

I really didn't think that I'd see something like that happen to my family. I thought 9/11 had somehow absolved me of being near anything like that. But there is no magic dispensation for having lived through a national nightmare. It seems to have spawned smaller nightmares that will plague us all for some time to come.

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