People gather on a corner near the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pa., where a shooter opened fire Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, injuring multiple people. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Discord and fear: We reap what we sow

Should we really be surprised where we’re going?

Rose Mallinger was 97 years old when she was shot dead inside a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday.

Melvin Wax was 88; husband and wife Sylvan and Bernice Simon were 86 and 84 respectively.

In all, the youngest of the 11 people gunned down was David Rosenthal – 54 years old with a developmental disability.

If you could draw a portrait of a coward, it would be the 46-year-old man who stole these lives – who burst into the Tree of Life synagogue, shouting anti-Semitic slurs and systematically killing this elderly collection of friends and neighbours on their Sabbath.

But he wasn’t the only coward at work last week.

The killings came just days after more than 10 pipe bombs were mailed to prominent Americans and a major news agency.

None exploded, and a suspect has been charged.

The two men share more than their cowardice. They share a deep hatred and suspicion that dark conspiracies are at work in the world.

It is an anger and fear stoked almost daily by individuals who draw their strength through discord and division.

U.S. President Donald Trump sees it differently. The real enemy, he says – “the enemy of the people” – is the media.

We’ve seen this tactic before: isolate, vilify, demonize. Repeat the lie at every opportunity until it becomes part of the background noise.

Most of us will roll our eyes and see it for what it is: a crude attempt to garner support by exploiting fear and suspicion.

But others act on the hatred. They buy their guns, make their bombs and plot their killings.

And we bury the dead, asking how it happened, when we all know the answer.

Just Posted

Delapidated houses on Henderson get demolition deadline

Property owner has to fence off and then demolish Chilliwack downtown properties within 30 days

Harrison country singer teaches kids to ‘follow your heart’

Todd Richard will be performing his song ‘Follow Your Heart’ for students on Feb. 1

Offender reintegration program gets $1.23 million in federal funding

Abbotsford-based No One Leaves Alone project also serves Mission, Chilliwack and Langley

Lucas Mannes comes home, leading Calgary Dinos against UFV Cascades

The Canada West scoreboard tracks Chilliwackians playing in the university basketball ranks.

PACWest Scoreboard: Gabe Mannes and Columbia Bible College chase first W.

The PACWest scoreboard updates how Chilliwackians are doing in the university basketball ranks.

Canada’s archive buys rare book that hints at Nazi plans for North America

The 1944 book may have served as a blueprint for a Nazi purge

B.C. hospital apologizes for veteran’s five-day hallway stay

Clinical director of Victoria General Hospital says case of retired veteran ‘definitely excessive’

Speaker Darryl Plecas says ‘justice’ needed for legislature employees

Plecas spoke to media at the opening of a pedestrian and cycling bridge in Abbotsford Wednesday

Advocate hopes B.C. legislature scandal leads to more transparency

‘Depressing’ that it takes a scandal to inspire freedom of information reform, says Sara Neuert

‘Dr. Lipjob’ avoids jail, gets 30-day suspended sentence

She will have to serve the 30 days in prison if she commits a breach during her two-year’s probation

Ex-Mountie involved in Taser death at Vancouver airport sues government

Kwesi Millington claims he acted in accordance with RCMP training

47 men arrested by Vancouver police for allegedly seeking sex with teenage girls

Seven of those arrested have been charged as part of a two-month operation

Surrey farmers taking stock of revamped Canada Food Guide

Products that were once big at the table — like meat and dairy — have been put on the back-burner

Surrey Pretrial inmate lodges human rights complaint for not being fed kosher food

Inmate claims denial of her request for kosher diet violates Section 8 of the Human Rights Code

Most Read