Friday, April 15, 2005

Too short

A couple of days ago, some children played a baseball game. Nothing unusual there. After the game, two young men, children actually, had an argument at the concession stand. Still nothing unusual. One of the young men then became agitated and in the next instant the scene went from ordinary to tragic as one child pummeled Jeremy Rourke,15, with a baseball bat until his life was cut...too short. In an ever violent world, I have two questions: did the suspect have a history of violent behavior and more importantly why didn't anyone jump in and stop this? The answer, according to various reports, to the first question is no. The Arizona Republic reports that 'the [suspect] was known for being competitive but did not have a reputation for violence'. In the coming days, weeks, and months the investigation should confirm or debunk this claim. As for the second question, how was the suspect able to deliver multiple blows to Rourke without anyone stepping in? I am having a difficult time picturing bystanders watching as another child was beaten to death. Perhaps the situation was different, but from accounts I have read no one has asked, "where were the parents/spectators/coaches during this incident?" I'm not looking to place blame, but find it curious no one stepped in to stop this before it escalated. Regrettably, violence on our sports arenas is becoming too often and too violent. As a society we really need to begin to think about what drives our children's knee-jerk violent responses as well as our own apathy. Until we do, scenes like this one in Palmdale, CA will become all too familiar.


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