I 1000% agree that the recent Rolling Stone cover (featuring the surviving Boston Marathon bomber) was a TERRIBLY insensitive ploy — a painful sight to see for many who have been through so much. If you’ve followed the story, you’re aware of all the reasons as to why the decision was so ill-advised.
At the same time, I think that the article itself is worth reading.
Glamorizing the suspect’s name and image? I’m absolutely against the idea (hence why I choose not to mention his name, nor include the photograph). But what about looking into what could have contributed to motivating such a crime? My personal reason for wanting to understand his story comes more out of “how could this be avoided in the future?” If at all.
It would be ignorant for us to conclude at the end of any such tragedy that, “He was just f*cking crazy.” People don’t pop out of the womb as these monsters with ill intentions. Struggles, hardships, environment, upbringing, with a delicate combination of certain types of personalities, is often the cause of such violent intentions. I’m not saying, in any way, shape or form, that this justifies his crimes. Not at all. Not everyone who has a rough life decides to go on a killing rampage.
And now, at the end of it all, I feel very much torn.
More than anything, what I would hope to take away from this is that everyone is fighting their own battles in life, ones that we may never see or understand, despite how “close” we may think we are to a person. If we have this in mind, maybe we can be better to others — nicer, more understanding, more open-minded. Maybe serve as the positive influence in ways we never know or realize.
Maybe this story can encourage us to reach out to those we feel may be lost, or hurting, or going through something deeply personal.
Maybe by putting forth that effort, it can help us pick up these signals that are so hard to intercept most of the time.
Maybe, just maybe, in a rare instance, it can be the one thing that saves someone else from entering that dark place. From doing the unthinkable. Maybe one kind gesture, or a string of many, can make a huge difference. Maybe we can be the silent heroes. Perhaps not cover-worthy to most, or even recognized at all, but the kind that is so crucial to this world we live in, one that is so full of sorrow and pain.
Or maybe it’s all wishful thinking. Maybe you think I need to stop sh*tting rainbows and puppies and get real. Maybe my mentality is far too idealistic, one that can’t actually apply to the world we live in.
I would be lying if I didn’t say that this incident has shaken me, as it obviously has for many. I don’t trust people like I did, I’m a lot more skeptical of peoples’ intentions. I’m much more pessimistic. I would rather be rude than jeopardize my own safety. I don’t like that that’s how I feel, or that that’s the world we live in, but it’s the honest truth.
The only thing I am sure of is this: That the survivors and the memories of those who were lost should take center stage. Because no one deserves what they have been through. Which is why I support this cover over the one that Rolling Stone magazine decided to go with, any day: