The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Cindy's Corner

April 19, 2010

What lessons can we take from OKC bombing?


Just a few minutes ago, the dispatcher on the police scanner we keep in the office declared a moment of silence at 9:02 a.m. to remember the victims of the Murrah Building bombing.

I was the only one in the newsroom. It was quiet. For at least a full minute. No phones ringing. No buzz from the scanner. Just quiet.

Today we remember the 15th anniversary of the OKC bombing, an act carried out by an extremist militia group (and yes, I think more than Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols were involved).

They carried out their plot because of their hatred of the federal government. They say the catalyst for their terrorist act was the Clinton administration’s handling of the David Koresh compound in Waco.

Former President Bill Clinton has made reference to what was going on in his administration back in 1995 and what is going on with the Obama administration now. He’s made a loose correlation about anti-government rhetoric being to blame for the bombing back then, and also anti-government rhetoric being espoused now.

I agree that if people get mad enough, they sometimes can react in a very bad way. I don’t agree that people voicing their displeasure with government is always the catalyst to a violent act.

The Clinton administration made some mistakes; however, I don’t recall the Clinton administration egging their critics on with arrogance or downright contempt.

Lets get this straight right now. Violence is NEVER the answer. I don’t support so-called militias who take up arms in full contemplation of starting violence to address their concerns. It has to be condemned dramatically and emphatically.

However, I don’t believe the Obama administration is being responsible in the way they’re addressing their critics. In fact, they’ve basically labeled their critics as idiots, uninformed and just a bunch of malcontents. Some have tried to label every person opposed to their agenda as a potential right-wing nut. They use an obscene term for the TEA parties and think its funny. Their flippant attitude about peoples’ very real concerns  flies in the face of what being a governing body is supposed to be about.

It almost seems as though this administration is daring the most extreme contingents.

Fifteen years after the OKC bombing, what have we learned? Its a question we need to ask as we move forward.

Our leaders have to understand the huge responsibility they have, even to their opponents. And those who oppose a certain administration’s agenda have to understand that the ballot box is the place to address changes.

 All of us should be mindful today of our responsibilities.


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