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April 29, 2013

CUMMINS: Two ways to protect yourself

It’s tough to protect yourself in this crazy world we live in. It’s both a beautiful and an ugly world, a peaceful and a violent world. It’s an angry world beset with conflict, and yet tempered with tranquil moments that keep hopes alive. It was designed a perfect and harmonious world, but populated with assortments of imperfect beings. As civilization progresses, the uncivilized elements keep popping up which test our resolve to try understanding the unexplainable.

Violence and terrorism are two major topics currently taking precedence over mundane subjects such as climate change, the economy and budgets. Reports of the numerous incidents of violence are so numerous it’s difficult keeping up with them. Skip those reports and go to the entertainment or sports section. Don’tt bother with keeping track of how many people were violently killed today.

The recent Boston Marathon bombing captured our nation’s attention. How dare those two young immigrant brothers, one a U.S. citizen and the other a permanent resident, terrorize us? That our country had not been terrorized in 12 years, is rather unbelievable considering the preponderance of wackos populating the world. Although our government is broken in many respects, it does a few things right. Thanks for keeping us relatively safe these past 12 years.

Most of our world’s 7 billion people want peace, and that which comes with it. There are, however, a substantial number of fanatics, radicals and jihadists under cover out there, who are capable of and waiting for the opportunity to pack a pressure-cooker or suicide bomb and kill as many innocents as possible with one whack. “You notice me now, don’t you?” is the language they speak, a devotion and commitment unparalleled. 

Having worked with youth over 30 years, I realized how impressionable they are. Most turn out OK, but there are those few who can go either way. One of my students won a Nobel Prize and another made the FBI’s most wanted list. For a myriad of reasons — abuse, bullying and resentment to name a few — young people can become deeply disturbed, confused and blatantly evil. Supposedly, the Boston bombers were “nice kids.” 

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