Dave Richards for March 19th…………
--Do I dare? Will I be sorry if I tell you that I think the winter of 2018-2019 is practically over? Well, the astronomical change of the seasons is tomorrow, but as we all know, there is a “lag” usually between what the calendar says and what Mother Nature brings. Still, we have daytime temperatures all in the 40s and above this week, so it’s really tempting to take a deep breath and ‘go for it’, don’t you think?
--Here’s a question to ponder. “Is it really better to know ‘the truth’ about past events, or are we generally better off simply moving forward into the future tending to matters we can do something about?”
I’ll tell you why I ask that question. Just recently the big news in the forensic and crime world is the revelation that somebody thinks they know who the man was who was responsible for the so-called ‘Jack the Ripper’ murders in London in the late 1800s. They think it was a then 23 year-old Polish immigrant who was trained to be a barber. He was a suspect at the time, but the forensic science at the time couldn’t link him to any of the evidence. Now, with DNA and other tests at humanity’s disposal, they think they have their man.
I say, “who cares”, it will help no one. The man they claim did the killings was himself dead by the age of 54. He died in an asylum. Not a nice way to go. But why bring it up now? Probably because they can.
I think that all this 21st century science would be better used to help the people living today. In some cases it is. We read with some regularity of a person living in prison who claimed their innocence and now today’s technology proves they were.
Another good use for this technology is to solve more recent murders, if they can. The Doreen Picard murder comes to mind. The problem with that is the same problem they have with the London example. So much of the evidence available for re-examination cannot be held to the high standards of purity today’s legal system requires. So, even when you do use modern technology to uncover new facts, the new information seems to stir up more controversy and ask more questions than they answer.
So, to my point. Even if you could find ‘the truth’, could you prove it to everyone’s satisfaction? Not likely. Who will benefit from renewed controversy and more questions? I would not dare to imagine what family members of actual murder victims feel about this subject. I do wonder, though. And I wonder if they just want to move on to make use of their time to look forward rather than look back.
Like all of us, I have a few of those family controversies which are not as serious as a murder in the family, thank God, but nonetheless occupy the minds of certain family members. Some in my family, join me in keeping these matters private and “behind us” so as not to distract us from making progress with the rest of our lives. Others just dwell on them. Deaths in the family, wrongs which should have been righted but weren’t, just how much Native American blood do you have in you. You know, all the things no one can do nothing about any more. Who cares? I don’t have time for it.
I also wonder what we can do to inspire people to move and think in a forward-looking fashion. Looking back and keeping score is a breeding ground for mental illness and hate. I suppose all we can do is to set a good example and concern ourselves with the truly important things.
--That's what I think. What do you think? Comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org or postal mail to Dave Richards, WOON Radio, 985 Park Avenue, Woonsocket, RI 02895-6332.
Thanks for reading.