I’ve read some pretty stupid things written about the Boston Marathon such as when David Sirota pined for the bombers to be “white Americans.”
But now I’ve read something even more stupid. Did it come from The Nation, Mother Jones or Salon?
Sadly, no. It came from PJ Media. To be precise, it came from the poison pen of Michael Walsh who sees fit to bash the people of Boston:
Enough with all the chest-thumping, mingled with manly tears, about the dramatic end of the Marathon bombers’ reign of terror in Boston last week. From the press coverage, you’d think the entire city (which is actually rather small) rose up as one and smote two evil Chechens a stunning blow for truth, justice, liberty and the American Way. Nothing could be further from the truth.
What we saw instead was a city cowering in fear, led by two particularly pusillanimous toads in Gov. Deval Patrick and Mayor Mumbles Menino, who had the services of some 10,000 armed personnel – literally, a small army – to take down…wait for it…a wounded teenager with a gun, and maybe some self-detonating explosives.
Way to go, Boston. You’ve made us all proud to be Americans.
This could have only be written by someone who doesn’t live in Boston.
As a Boston resident, I take garbage like this personally. It’s easy for Walsh to write this garbage when his community isn’t in the line of fire.
So Walsh sees Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as nothing more than “a wounded teenager with gun.” Well, that wounded teenager with a gun was partially responsible for detonating two bombs which killed three people (including an 8-year old boy) and wounded more than 170 people. Of course, 72 hours would elapse before it became known said teenager was involved in the attack.
A few hours after that revelation, this precocious teenager shot a police officer dead, stole a car, kidnapped the driver (releasing him only because he isn’t American) and engaged in a chase with police in which he alternated between tossing bombs and shooting at authorities. In the course of this, a police officer was seriously wounded. After that teenager’s older brother was killed, he fled in a vehicle running over his sibling and then eluded authorities for 18 hours after that. Until that teenager was discovered in that boat, the police didn’t know he had been wounded. Despite this wounded state, he still managed to engage authorities in gunfire. Not exactly your typical 19-year old.
But what is most annoying is Walsh’s characterization of Boston “cowering in fear.” While things were tense in Watertown things were different in my neck of the woods in Jamaica Plain and no doubt in other neighborhoods. There was a steady stream of cars driving by. A neighbor told me that JP’s business district was teeming with people during the afternoon. Before Tsarnaev was caught, my roommate and I went out for dinner. We tried to live as normally as possibly as we could under the circumstances.
I do share Walsh’s lack of enthusiasm for Menino and Patrick, especially Patrick. The Governor can’t imagine what would possess the Tsarnaev’s to do what they did. But in terms of their response following the shootout with the Tsarnaevs, I’m not sure what else they could have done. Does Walsh think Patrick should have kept the MBTA open? Had the T been kept open it could have given Tsarnaev a chance to escape, blow up a bus or train and take as many people with him as possible.
Walsh thinks the people of Boston should have gone after the Tsarnaevs Beslan-style. Well, we know how that turned out (as Walsh acknowledges). Of course, it’s an easy thing for Walsh to write knowing he will probably never be put into that position. It’s one thing to be a passenger on United 93 where they had nowhere else to turn and taking matters into their own hands was their only choice. It’s another to be in a situation where you are not trapped and have professionally trained personnel who can bring the perpretrators to justice.
But let’s suppose for a moment that Walsh had been in Boston when the younger Tsarnaev was at large and he decided to put his Beslan plan into effect. The authorities would have told Walsh to get the hell out of the way. If Walsh refused to comply, he would be placed under arrest and charged with interfering in a police investigation. Going Beslan would have put himself, his neighbors and the authorities into even more peril and possibly done grievous harm.
In a subsequent post at The Corner on NRO, Walsh tut tuts, “Pardon me if I take exception to the ‘Boston Tough’ meme now floating around in the wake of the lockdown of an entire city forced by one armed but wounded teenager.”
Well, actually it’s “Boston Strong” and this “meme” Walsh writes of came about following the bombings, not during the pursuit of the Tsarnaevs. It was on display at the TD Bank North Garden during the Boston Bruins-Buffalo Sabres game last Wednesday was in response to the police who restored order, the Marathon spectators and volunteers who ran to assist the wounded and the runners who ran to MGH to donate blood plus other acts of decency and kindness in the face of evil.
Perhaps Walsh doesn’t consider such acts sufficiently courageous. Perhaps it doesn’t make Walsh proud to be an American. If that is the case then so be it. Yet despite his contempt for the people of Boston, I can only hope that Islamic terrorism never rears its ugly head where he lives.