I’m sure you all heard about the plane crash into the IRS building in Austin, TX. Apparently the pilot had some pretty bad luck with his life and his retirement, blamed the government and Big Brother for all his problems, and decided to end it all by taking out (or in this case, attempting to take out) a lot of IRS workers or something. How tragic that someone’s circumstances can lead to something like this. The man, Andrew Joseph Stack, believed that the government was out to squash the middle man and eventually had enough. He left a suicide note/manifesto, titled “Well Mr. Big Brother IRS man… take my pound of flesh and sleep well,” on his registered web domain, which was taken down this afternoon. The Smoking Gun has a text copy of this note, as does CNN.
I read through the note. It left me with feelings of pity, confusion, incredulity, shock, amazement, and a slew of others. Ultimately, Stack comes to the conclusion that “violence not only is the answer, it is the only answer.” My mouth hung open in disbelief. My brain fogged as I tried to make sense of this opinion. It reminded me of some of the characters that Joe Abercrombie created, people like Caul Shivers. Shivers tried to do the right thing and be a good man, but soon came to realize that, in the end, you still go back in the mud.
Did Stack reach this point, too? The breaking point of humanity? The point where our logic eventually caves and we’re reduced to a primal rage? Personally, I feel that this opinion is not valid and that violence is rarely the answer. And when this conclusion can be reached, I’m left to deduce that the person has no belief in an afterlife? Though that deduction is flawed, as Muslim extremists believe they are doing the right thing when they blow themselves up in hopes of slaying some infidels.
I have always been a person who strives to see every side of every argument. While I pity Mr. Stack for his misfortune in life, I wonder how biased his opinion was? I agree that the government tends to screw people, but that’s no reason for violence. Furthermore, he offers to take no blame for any of these problems. It’s as if everything that happened to him was beyond his control and he was completely innocent in everything. Now this may be a possibility, the likelihood is rather improbable.
I’m not sure where I’m going with this post. It just struck me the wrong way. I’m a patriot. I love the United States of America. I believe that I live in the best country on the planet. America has plenty of problems, but so does life. Our government is full of hypocrites and money hungerers. Unfortunately, crashing your plane into a government building is not the answer. I’m also a compassionate person, one who longs to help anyone in need, whether it be a homeless woman on the street or a middle class man under strain. And when I read about things like the tragedy of Joe Stack, it makes me sad.
I hope for a better future, one where violence is not the answer. One where people aren’t reduced to horrors and terrorism. In the end, I’m thankful that the casualties/injuries from the plane crash were small. Austin, TX, you’re in my prayers, and so are you America.