Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Let the dead bury the dead

The furor over the bombing suspect's burial has subsided as new tragedies have befallen our nation.

The best response that I saw and heard to this furor was by Thomas Lynch (a poet and undertaker) on NPR:
THOMAS LYNCH: ...There is this sense, with evildoers, that we'd like to do some evil to them; and their deaths prevent that. So the people in Worcester who are making much of this, I think, are speaking to an old, sort of tribal frustration that we can't desecrate the corpse. All we can do is observe that the dead don't care...   This is the man who did an evil thing. But his body, his corpse, should be tended to because humans do this. Humans are sort of accountable to the corpses of the dead - not because it matters to the dead but because each of us, as humans, expects to be tended to properly. I mean, this is what separates us from other living things that breed and breathe and die.

The burial of the dead, Audie, is sort of Humanity 101.

Listen and read the transcript from NPR here.

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