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Boston Bombing News: Does Boston need to sacrifice Tsarnaev to stay “strong”?

What exactly is “Boston Strong”? From Wikipedia:

April 15, 2013, the slogan “Boston Strong” appeared as a highly popular hashtag on Twitter and rapidly spread around the world. An expression of Boston’s unity after the bombings, the slogan showed up on T-shirts and other products, and was emblazoned on the “Green Monster” wall at Boston’s Fenway Park. The Boston Bruins displayed the slogan on their helmets at their game two days after the bombings, and at the first baseball game in Fenway Park after the bombings, the stadium announcer told the crowd: “We are one. We are strong. We are Boston. We are Boston strong.”

The slogan has firmly been established as a symbol for a common unifying spirit shared by the cizitens of Boston – against an unspecified threat. Its success was however accompanied by cricitism that it was insincere and commercially exploited  (see the Wikipedia overview). But this is not the place to tell off T-shirt manufacturers or sports teams who integrate the slogan into their own corporate identity. This is not the problem.

The problem is a little noted side effect of the campaign: pretending that the Marathon bombing is cleared up and solved and thereby cementing the unproven narrative of the guilt of the Tsarnaev brothers. This is still the subject of a current court proceeding after all and should be handled with extreme care.

“Boston Strong” ist just the most overt manifestation of this “common spirit” campaign. There are other, much more annoying phenomenons. I suggest a visit at the Boston Herald’s comment section attached to a Tsarnaev article, a filthy dungeon where demons, devils and demiurges discuss the most sadistic ways to punish Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. The Herald’s editors seem to be happy with that situation.

The Boston Globe pursues a more noble approach. The one or other demiurge is still roaming through the comment section, but in general, the articles are more balanced and the comments civilized. However, one word is always missing:  the I-word – I for Innocence. “Tsarnaev innocent” rates as conspiracy theory.

The massive media campaign to demonize the brothers has succesfully established a taboo. It is not decorous to question the official narrative or research its logical consistency. The liberal polite Boston society is against the death penalty by a majority, but it looks away when Tsarnaev is deprived of his fundamental rights. The defense has made a convincing case that, if a change of venue is not justified in this case, where else is it? Kevin Cullen is not impressed.

It is the daily bread of journalists to monitor the internet, including non-official sources. Noone of the Boston journalistic intelligenzija can make excuses that he didn’t know of the tenuous story presented by the government. Some of them even exploit the attacks and write books like “Boston Strong” which is little more than a movie script and ridiculizes the concept of fact-based journalism. It will be published on January 17th 2015, right in the start-up phase of the trial, to serve justice.

The many calls for a plea deal give evidence for the desire to avoid a detailed open discussion of the case – and to silence Dzhokhar Tsarnaev by throwing him into a dungeon forever. A city whose leaders and residents celebrate their common spirit at the expense of one single family whose guilt is unlikely, not proven and who is not even allowed to speak out is not strong at all. It is decadent.

However, at the moment it looks like Dzhokhar does not intend to stay silent.

 

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