Thursday, April 19, 2007

John Podhoretz to John Derbyshire: Don't Blame the Victims

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John Podhoretz has a post up at The Corner sharply criticizing John Derbyshire, also of NRO Online, for blaming the victims of the VT massacre:

I have to dissent, in the strongest possible terms, from John Derbyshire's shocking posts on Virginia Tech. The notion that a human being or group of human beings holding no weapon whatever should somehow "fight back" against someone calmly executing other people right in front of their eyes is ludicrous beyond belief, irrational beyond bounds, and tasteless beyond the limits of reason.

"Why didn't anyone rush the guy?" Derb asks. Gee, I don't know. Because he was executing people? Because if you rush a guy with a gun, he shoots you in the head the way he executed the teachers in each classroom?

Derb claims proudly to be touching a "third rail" by raising something no one wants to talk about. The third rail is a metaphor for electrocution. What happened in those classrooms was no metaphor. It was a psychotic with a gun and a lot of people with no weaponry at their disposal. A few were astonishingly brave, and deserve to be considered heroes. Everybody else was just a person either in danger of being murdered, being mortally wounded, or being murdered.

In the name of old-fashioned and time-honored forms of human behavior, Derb has trampled on one of the oldest: Judge not, lest ye be judged.

I may never again find myself praising a Podhoretz piece, but credit absolutely has to be given where it's due.

Via Memeorandum.

Cross-posted at Shakesville.

1 comment:

Jolly Roger said...

It was absolutely infuriating to hear what Boortz had to say.

These cowards that never get anywhere near live bullets sure have a lot of advice for those that actually do face danger, don't they?