D.B. Grady at The Week on the high-definition coverage of the Boston bombers How should we grieve victims of the Boston Marathon bombings? "One need not have been in clear and present danger to sufficiently grieve," argues D.B. Grady, who observes the odd dynamic, present in our conversations and on cable TV, that emphasizes physical proximity to disaster. "No one among us needs to see the finish-line scaffolding engulfed in plumes of white smoke, nor that first runner fall to the ground —ball-bearing-shrapnel plunged into his femur — to understand the gravity of the situation, or appreciate the implications for personal safety at public gatherings. Nor do we need the name and face of the child slain in the attack to recognize that the indiscriminate slaughter of children is bad (or more importantly, is the modern reality). None of that is necessary to impart the urgency or import of the matter. But there it is, in high definition." Writing from Newton, Massachusetts, Esquire's Charles Pierce adds that to see his hometown projected on TV is to watch it transform. "Right now, the fundamental geography of my daily life has changed forever," he writes. "It is circumscribed by violence. And I am watching all of this on television. This pretty plainly is not most days."
Joan Walsh at Salon on Ruslan Tsarni's televised outburst As Ruslan Tsarni, the uncle of Boston bombings suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, spoke heatedly before reporters and cameras on Friday morning, he communicated what it is to be an immigrant in America, says Joan Walsh. "Tsarni's rant wasn’t exactly what law enforcement might have advised: A soothing person giving young Dzhokhar a reason to come out of his hiding place alive, and to cooperate with officials in revealing whether there may be more hidden bombs as well as what his and his late brother Tamerlan’s motives were," she begins. "But it was a window on an ancient American story: The anguish of immigrants when one of their own becomes notorious, and shames not only his family, but his entire ethnic group." Tsarni's impassioned praise of America didn't go unnoticed, either. "Ruslan Tsarni ... is the definition of a great American," wrote Keith Olbermann. "If his sentiments about USA don't make you tear up, get checked." MSNBC's S.E. Cupp addressing Tsarni, added, "Ruslan Tsarni, don't be ashamed. Your pride in America and Chechnya is remarkable. Your nephews may be losers, but you are not."