Monday, June 22, 2009

I have a little ritual where every morning upon coming down stairs (unless I go surfing that day) I drink my coffee as I watch a little bit of the local morning news mainly to get the weather info before I start my day.
Naturally, I sit through about 10 minutes, or so of whatever stories they are covering while waiting for the weather. This means that I generally space out or think about my agenda for the day.
However, this morning a story caught my attention, or more to the point, the reaction of individuals in the story is what caught my attention.

The (quick) back story is this, last year two road cyclists where training in the hills of the Cupertino area and were tragically struck and killed by a Sheriff’s deputy who had fallen asleep at the wheel of his patrol car while driving.
This is obviously a terrible incident to be sure. Now, a year later family and friends of the fallen cyclists are outraged that the officer isn’t being “punished sufficiently enough” for the accident.
Now, myself having lost far too many family members since I was a young boy I can totally relate to the anguish and frustration of the family and friends of the cyclists, but I am sympathetic to both parties.

Upon seeing and hearing one of the family/friends of the fallen cyclists interviewed for the segment and how he angrily spat to the interviewer that, “the officer was basically on a paid vacation for the past year…” saddened me. The guy was so angry and the hate in his eyes was so deep that he was blinded to the whole picture. I couldn’t help but shake my head and think of the officer who will have to live with this tragedy for the rest of his life! We forget that it was an ACCIDENT. I’m pretty sure he didn’t set out that day on his shift hoping to kill some one with his patrol car. Perhaps there is more to this tragedy but that’s all the information that I got.
I couldn’t even begin to imagine how it would be to have to shoulder this tragedy for the rest of my days AND to have a large group of people just hating me for it on top of it all. You try to go on and live a "normal" life after that. I don't really know if that would be possible.

No matter how much this guy is “punished” it will NEVER bring back the cyclists.
I can’t help but feel that the world is losing more and more compassion and sensitivity every day not to mention just plain old critical thinking.

There are more than two victims in this ordeal. I hope the family and friends of the cyclists realize this soon and just try to move on and let this tragedy try to heal with time.

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