Tuesday, November 20, 2007

A Good Read From Iraq

Here's a an interesting story I came across from the New York Times about a family in Baghdad that has recently moved back into their apartment after being displaced.

It's a good read. I can't imagine having to live like that. After reading it a second time, though, I started to wonder: Aren't there places in America right now where people are just as afraid to be out of the house after dark?

From what I've read, some people right here in the U.S. live in neighborhoods where violence and crime is so rampant that anyone can be a target, intended or not.

Jajuana Cole, 13, was shot and killed by a stray bullet in front of her apartment building in New Haven a while back.

The story mentions that when the family returned to their apartment, there was a bullet hole in the microwave.

Not that long ago, a New Haven alderman's home was hit by bullets.

The Iraqis talk about the violence between Shia and Sunni sects ... while in New Haven, kids from rival neighborhoods target each other without even knowing who it is they're shooting at; just being from a certain neighborhood can make a kid a target.

I would think -- without really knowing, of course -- that living in Baghdad is still much worse than the worst place in America, but how much?

Just because the violence surrounding the people in some U.S. cities comes from ignorance and criminality rather than religious fanaticism or political motives, does that make it any less horrific? Does a bullet from a 16-year-old city kid's 9 mm hurt any less than one from an Iraqi militant's AK-47?

Just something I was thinking about.

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