Today Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day coincided. It’s the first time in over seventy years. The New York Times noted this with great hyperbole, as if you must celebrate one event by ignoring the other. I disagree. Why not celebrate both?
I wasn’t even going to mention this in my blog. My plan was to talk about our local mall as a metaphor for life. It’s now on its last leg with the second of three anchor stores closing in the coming weeks. I’d planned to compare this decline to aging and draw some succinct conclusion about how everything has a life expectancy.
But then the high school shooting in Broward County, FL, happened this afternoon. According to news reports it is the eighteenth high school incident since the beginning of the year. At last report, seventeen people are dead and others are injured. The primary suspect seems to be a former student who was expelled for behavior issues last year.
In one day we have ashes and hearts and flowers and mall maladies and shootings. I’m not sure which one is the most significant. Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day occur only once a year, although they’ve been around forever. And mall closings are not nationally noted anymore, what with the advent of the internet. Which leaves high school shootings to win the honor as the most current event today.
Shouldn’t we find this distressing?