Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Relieved By The Race Of A Killer?

I went to bed last night not yet knowing the identity of the Virginia Tech killer. Rumors were circulating on the web about terrorism, an Asian perpetrator, and the high number of Pakistani Muslim students on the campus. Pathetically, perhaps reflecting the tension many South Asians and Arabs are feeling these days, I confess actual relief this morning when I read that the assassin was "a South Korean native in the U.S. as a resident alien."

How sick is a reaction of gratitude that Cho Seung-Hui was not (a) Muslim or (b) South Asian or Middle Eastern? As a mother of brown sons in a society still processing what happened in September 2001, perhaps the word realistic is more apt. That's yet another reason why Paula Jolin's insightful novel (another class of 2k7 debut), In The Name of God (Roaring Book, April 2007) needs to be on every high school reading list in America. Come back soon to the Fire Escape for an interview with Paula about the book.


anonybrown said...

I have to say, I know exactly what you mean. My heart sunk a little from its already heavy weight when I heard the rumors that it was a South Asian. But, now when we see that its actually an Asian, a Korean, I feel like saying, "HA!" but I realize it's wrong to.
It's almost like everytime they see a shooting, or anything of that sort since 9/11, they automatically assume its muslim,south asian. Maybe now they'll realize that anyone, anywhere, can be capable of such horrors.

Christy Lenzi said...

I'm so glad you're interviewing Paula about her book--I look forward to it!

Liza's Eyeview said...

Oh gosh, I have to confess I too felt relieved (isn't that awful?)

When I first read the news that mentioned "Asian" as a description for the killer, my first thought was "I hope he's not Filipino". It's sad that I had to think that way...

That book you mentioned sounds interesting. I'll check that out.