Friday, October 4, 2013

A Woman Dies By Cop and I Am Left Wondering

Yesterday while the seat of government wound inexorably on inside its marble cocoons in Washington, a woman apparently tried to use her car as a weapon and ended up, all-too-predictably dead.

And I am left wondering.

Lawyer me wonders whether police who, during the government shut down,  aren’t being paid,  are still police and what that might mean for the potential financial liability of those doing the shooting.

Preacher me wonders about the well-being of those left in the aftermath: the now-motherless baby . . . the officer or officers doing the shooting . . . the family and friends of the woman who died . . . the first responders . . . a nation already on edge . . .

Peacemaker me wonders about choices made in the moment and why it’s easier or first instinct to shoot the person rather than the tires of her car when standing right beside the vehicle in that split-second moment of committed decision.

Citizen me wonders how many of us – probably in the thousands – a woman with serious problems must have walked, run and driven by on her way to her own death without us noticing, caring, acting, or knowing what to do to change her course.

Woman-of-faith me wonders if this woman whose name I do not even know is finally at peace.

Human me wonders what it takes inside a person’s body chemistry, history and decision-making places to use a car as a weapon of destruction when she could well have had that omni-present ‘baby on board’ sign in her back window.

I read today from the blog Everyday Grace about the prayer to be enabled to see others as God sees them and gingerly, ever so gingerly, I offer up the same prayer.


  1. Oh, Beth, I wondered so many of the same things. At the time they shot her, I couldn't believe they didn't just shoot her tires. I know they will justify their actions, and maybe they should. But, I still wonder -- like you -- what the consequences will be in the aftermath. I pray for the victims of this tragedy.

    May we all be more sensitive to the suffering someone we know is going through to help prevent such occurrences.