Friday, April 3, 2015

147 dead, Islamist gunmen killed after attack at Kenya college. from

The massacre that killed 147 people and wounded scores of others at a Kenyan university lasted for hours Thursday before the terror was over. "It is a very sad day for Kenya," Interior Ministry Joseph Nkaissery said of the carnage at Garissa University College. The death toll is the highest in a terror attack on Kenyan soil since the U.S. Embassy was bombed in 1998. More than 200 people died in the Nairobi blast.



  1. How utterly horrifying. It puts perspective on things, doesn't it?

  2. Yes, "just awful" doesn't begin to approach it. My post anove? Talk about First World problems.

    1. Well, the worse we let some First-World problems such as the decline of educational standards to fester, the more we'll find ourselves grappling with problems like these. Fresno is a prime example: we giggle about my students' unsavory preoccupation with sheep, but much more common here are meth labs and car thefts. I wish I could do more to stop it. Expecting my students to have their wits about them at all times seems a good place to start.

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  4. Indeed. I also find myself thinking that:

    (1) everybody involved, for better and for worse, appears to be taking universities and their function in the society very seriously. I suppose we have that in a way (and I'm certainly glad the attacks on our schools aren't, for the most part, physically violent), but it still feels somehow different from the attitude in the U.S.

    (2) In addition to providing an education, this university was apparently a place where Muslims and Christians (and quite possibly those of other/no faith(s)) managed to live and work together amicably, and that's apparently one reason it was attacked. That motivation strikes me as especially horrifying, awful, etc., etc.

  5. These things raise in me conflicted feelings. Like others here, I initially consider that comparatively, my problems are insignificant. I also wonder what I can do to fix things.

    Maybe it's a defense against my feelings of helplessness, but next I consider the fallacy of relative privation, and that the presense of worse problems elsewhere does not automatically make mine disappear. And how to fix those other problems? Can I realistically jet over there and intervene personally? I am not trained for that and would probably end up dead without materially improving anything.

    But I am trained for what I am doing now, thus I am where I should be, where I can make a difference. I can strive to remove the obstacles that stymie the educational process in the hope that a better educated populace will decrease the liklihood of the terrible things. I can resove to be less petty with my colleagues and to be the best "me" I can be.