Posted by: philipfontana | April 18, 2013

Boston 2013


Dedicated to the three people who died thus far & the 180 seriously maimed & others injured. And dedicated to all those who assisted others & are still doing so.


     Participants in the 2010 Boston Marathon. A tradition going back 116 years to 1897, the Boston Marathon has always been the iconic run to those of us for whom running has been our personal sport.

     Excuse us for living, but I was not writing a blog after September 11, 2001. So this is a dimension of the experience I could do without. But try to write on any other subject at this time. It falls flat and inappropriate. – – I know. And try to write about Boston and you want to shut up! Who needs to hear another thing unless you have some 2 cents worthy of people’s patience and consideration.

It is important to know for the sake of enforcing justice and future defense and prevention what kind of attack this was. Was this the work of an organized terrorist group, foreign or domestic, or that of a lone psychopath or two or some other form of evil motivation? Regardless, the result will and must be heightened security across the nation. Particularly, there will be more vigilance in our “public squares” at levels reaching closer down to municipal levels as opposed to just the big cities. The hysteria we feared after September 11 may indeed be here. Whether or not the intensity will fade may depend upon the results of the on-going investigations in Boston.

And that is the challenge of the dilemma we face as a nation at this time. We walk the delicate balance between freedom and security. Do we want to be a nation mirroring life in, say, downtown Tel Aviv? People feel relatively safe in this second most populous city in Israel next to Jerusalem as long as there is an armed soldier on a bus and a private security guard at the entrance of every café. And is such an armed society even possible in a land as large as that of the USA?

It remains to be seen whether “Boston” was the next act of terrorism after September 11 or, rather, another Oklahoma City-type event in our nation’s violent history. (Personally, I’d bet on the latter or homegrown terrorism. Pinpointing the Boston Marathon and Patriot’s Day smacks too strongly of an “insider’s American mentality.”) If it is the former, outright terrorism, we must remember and follow our September 11 experience:

1. What we must do to counter/fight terrorism.

2. What we can do better based on our experience.

3. What we do not have to do at all in terms of our overall reaction.

It is in that last one – – overreacting – – that I regret to say then terrorists become the victors.


     An April 15, 2013 photo near the finish line of this year’s Boston Marathon. Other photos of the carnage are too difficult to bear.

     Excuse us for living, but there will be a Boston Marathon next year, the Boston authorities assure us. Let’s make sure that marathons, parades, and other public events continue throughout our land with whatever security measures we deem necessary when all is said and done.

    Comments: Please!


  1. Keep writing-Freedom vs Security-our country is still an experiment. I watch, listen and send healing energy.

  2. Bernadette, Leave it to the sensitivities of the artist to see right to the core of the event….freedom vs. security. Compliments. It’s been a hard few days….I wrote two other posts over the last three weeks to launch this week & then Boston happened. Any other topic seemed meaningless & yet, anything re Boston had to be worthwhile. Thanks. Phil

  3. If we stop living and run scared they win. The show of love and support at the Garden lasst night spoke volumes. Why does it always take tragedy for Americans to unite? Why can’t people show kindness, empathy, love and suppoert to each other

    • Roe, so nice of you to comment. I wish more people were like you to say what’s on their minds & react. You’re right….this is all about freedom vs. security & we must continue on with our lives or the terrorists win!!! People have really shown love & support at those sports events! Wonderful! And the love & support lasts for a while & then it fades. Next step is for President Obama to expand his anger at the Congress on gun control to all matters that the conservative Republicans refuse to act on- -budget,immigration, etc. Tell them that he & the country have had enough of them. Look at our problems from Newtown to Boston. “We have a country to run. Stop blocking legislation & solutions to our problems or get out of the way & go back home! We’ll elect new people who can govern!” Thanks, Roe! Phil

  4. AND leave our s.s. and medicare ALONE! promises must be kept. We can not throw away the “old” baby out with the bath water– the results would be horrific.

  5. You’re not kidding !!!! Otherwise we all march on Washington & I MEAN IT!!!!!! That would be “Occupy DC” time! Thanks! Phil

  6. Philip, we can never have sufficient security to ensure there will be no terrorist acts, whether domestic or foreign in origin. What we can do is quit listening to the “get rich at any cost” idiots and turn instead to “give help for every need.” The more we watch out for each other, regardless of age, sex, origin, religion or race, the stronger and more vigilant we become and the faster we heal. This must include protecting our environment and making sure all non-human species have the right and ability to live a reasonable life.

  7. Jim, The biggest compliment to your eloquent & sage words is to say no more than how much I agree. How people can be insensitive to the preservation of the only earth we have to ride through our Galaxy is beyond me. And, Happy Anniversary to you two!! Phil

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