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October 23, 2002

Rah, Rah Sniper!!! Few stories

Rah, Rah Sniper!!!

Few stories capture our attention in quite the same way as the sniper has over the past few weeks. Ratings for stations like CNN and MSNBC have been through the roof because we as a public just can’t get enough. We circle and hover over any scrap of information we can find, then digest it and try to make sense of what we have just learned.

I am not attempting to belittle the seriousness of this situation, or make light of the experiences that people in the Virginia/D.C. area have been living through for three weeks, but I have been struck by my reaction to the story. I almost feel as though I am watching a sporting event, only the stakes are much higher than simply getting a “W” on our record.

When watching my favorite college team play I am consistently filled with a mixture of emotions. There is a natural and predictable ebb and flow to my feelings, some happy and some sad. I am enthused when my team has a great play, or puts points on the board, yet am nearly depressed when they lose the ball or allow the opponent to score points. Over the past three weeks, as I tune in to find out the latest on the sniper shootings, my emotions have been eerily similar.

Each day I routinely check the internet and at night I flip to the news to find out if any new information has been revealed in our search for this killer. Each time a new victim is shot and the killer gets away, he (or they) scores a point. So far, the sniper has scored 13, with 10 of those being touchdowns. We score when we find out new, possibly helpful pieces of evidence. The only problem is, as a fan of the authorities I am finding that I get excited at the scoring of points for our team, only to see those points erased from the board as another lead turns into a dead end.

We score at the Home Depot killing when so many witnesses came forward………only to find out that one of them had lied. We scored when the police surrounded the white van at the phone booth, surely arresting one of the killers………only to see him have no relation to the killings. Our points are tallied and then removed. It seems as if we have been in this pattern since the killings began.

Now the bastard(s) are demanding $10 million dollars??? I guess that would be one more point for the killer. He probably just realized, “Hey, I’m going to be killing people anyway, I might as well get paid for it.” Screw him. Let’s cheer our team on to victory. “Rah, rah, ree, kick ‘em in the knee. Rah, rah, rass, kill his fucking ass.” I feel as though I am pulling for the ultimate underdog, who needs our cheers and support more than anyone ever has. This is NC State vs. Houston, Villanova vs. Georgetown, and USA vs. Russia (in hockey), all rolled into one.

I recognize that unless you live directly in that area it is easy to distance yourself from what is happening. But the thought that my child could be shot at any moment simply because she walked on the sidewalk at the wrong/right time, scares the living shit out of me. Until they are caught, I will wave my pom poms in the air and do my best cheers for our side. I just hope it is a game that we can win, our opponent appears to be quite worthy.

Posted by Woundwort at October 23, 2002 11:18 AM | TrackBack
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