The Other Victims

–Violence touches many victims besides the obvious ones, and we ought to include them in our thoughts– Erik von Brunn, the son of the man who shot the guard at the Holocaust museum, said he felt remorse and thought his father ought to have died instead of the 39-yer-old Mr. Johns. His statement also said that he did not share his father’s extremist views which had long burdened his family. Yes, Mr. Johns was the obvious victim, but Erik von Brunn is one also. Will be ever forget that his father killed an innocent man just out of hatred? How will he ever make peace with that?
Earlier today I spoke with a friend mourning the death of a dog her former daughter in law had, out of spite, let out of the house on Pacific Coast Highway because the dog belonged to her former husband with whom she is in a custody battle. “ I thought of the person who ran over the dog,” my friend said, “who probably couldn’t see it coming in front of the car and who will from now on always remember he or she ran over a dog.” It’s easy to put oneself in the place of that person. Accidentally killing a dog running across a highway is something that could happen to any of us. Even if we end up only a victim of circumstances instead of as in this case one of spite, we’re still caught in a web of violence.
There are so many forgotten and overlooked victims in so many crimes, acts of violence and accidents, people who deserve our thoughts and compassion just as much as those who are officially declared victims.