All Gave Some
Let me note first that, despite the fact that 9/11 "changed everything," one thing it did not change.
I still have a much better chance of being shot in the head by a low-on-cash crack addict than I do of dying in any kind of terrorist attack.
Working, as I do, for a company that has had big layoffs in the last few years, I still have a better chance of being shot by a disgruntled fellow employee/madman than I do of dying in any kind of terrorist attack.
His name might or might not be Muhammad, but if I am going to be killed in my urban neighborhood, it may well be by some Islamically named 22-year-old illiterate gang-banger whose intended target ducks, making me the unlikely middle-aged victim of a drive-by shooting. To be fair, the guy who shoots me is just as likely to be named "Ray" or "Dave" as he is to be named "Muhammad." There is an excellent chance no one will crash a plane into my house.
And recent cutbacks in the size of the police force where I live (and maybe where you live, too) give us both an ever-increasing chance of being killed by some criminal who might already be in the can if there were 10 percent more cops in town.
And the guys coming out of the can are pretty likely to kill me, too. More come out every year because more go in every year. America jails people at a rate Stalin would have envied. If you live in an area where the guy on the next barstool is likely to be an ex-con, you know that some guys come out of the joint with a glow-in-the-dark head and some very bad intentions.
And if I get old enough to be broke and without decent health insurance, maybe I'll die because I won't be able to afford the insulin I need.
Maybe. I might die homeless, bedded down in the back of a cement block liquor store with a couple of ex-cons, a madwoman they call "Crazy Kathy" and a couple of veterans of the war in Iraq.
But that could be years away.
Of course, I could overdose. I don't use drugs, but as near as I can tell, anyone in America is likely to become a junky at any minute, without warning. Look at the professional sports, a national organization whose principal products are sad deaths and cookie-cutter redemption stories. Are radical Islamists running the NBA?
The radical Islamists aren't running around America closing factories. No imam foreclosed on your home. Your pension plan was not declared null and void by an ayatollah. The bullet that busts my head, the final memo that terminates me, will not be launched by anyone in a checkered head rag.
No, I'll be killed by the by the skulking byproducts of transitory abundance, by the "honey I swear I'll never touch that stuff again" crying of Glenn Beck, by the Rotarian-on-pills yawp of Rush Limbaugh, by the worthless not-tough-enough speeches of Democrat and Republican presidents who will fight anyone in the world but the bloated bastards who pay them to look the other way while my people get poorer every year. I'll be choked to death by management, killed to make a chamois for some rich guy's car, laid off and forgotten, old and coughing, shot in a convenience store robbery.
Yeah. We can kill 'em overseas, and we can kill each other here, and every Tomahawk missile leaves a trail of money that won't be spent on your kid's education.
All gave some. Some gave all. Nobody got a damn thing out of it.
To find out more about Marc Munroe Dion and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit www.creators.com.
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