I was intending to write a pleasant piece today about fishing for herring off the Craigflower Bridge, but whenever I stop to admire the beauty of the Gorge Waterway, I can't help thinking of Reena Virk.
Last Wednesday, March 10, would have been her 27th birthday. Unfortunately, she didn't make it to her 15th birthday, as she was brutally murdered by her middle class schoolmates in November 1997.
It happened right under the Craigflower Bridge where the folks in the picture are standing with their fishing lines in the water. The school she and her killers went to is just upstream from the bridge. All this beauty, the bucolic setting of the Gorge Water meant nothing to these products of our wonderful education system. Where did the boiling rage, the seething hatred, the indifference come from?
Could it be that modern society's rejection of the traditional morality we were taught when we were a Christian nation have something to do with it? One of the bedrock principles of Christian belief is that every human being is loved by God, and so to kill a person is a kind of blasphemy against God. We have strayed so far from that principle in the last half century that I think it's no wonder at all that those adolescent savages turned on one of their own like rabid dogs.
I believe the turning point was the Roe vs Wade decision in the US Supreme Court which made it a human right for a mother to kill her child. It was a lead that every Western nation followed. No need to go into the legalisms. It was a judgement desired by certain powerful elements in American society and so the English language was tortured and contorted until the right answer came out.
As is well accepted since Darwin's time human beings are classed as mammals. The word mammal refers to breasts, as mammals feed their young on milk produced by breasts. This means that instead of laying eggs and dying like salmon do, mammals nurture and protect their young until they are ready to look after themselves. And mammals are supposed to have a maternal instinct.
But the intellectualoids decided, as is their wont, to abolish that instinct. The world is too crowded, they reason, humans are destroying the earth. Bright idea! Let's talk young girls into killing their own babies. Let's change those outmoded laws, let's write articles and books, make movies and TV shows. And here's how we do it. We tempt people with sex. Everybody likes sex, it's like sugar, you can never get enough of it. Everybody always wants more. So many pretty girls, so many virile young men. Abolish the old morality. It's all right to 'hook up' just for the pleasure of it. No need anymore for getting married and getting stuck with one person your whole life. Have sex with whoever you want, at any time anywhere, it's just the funnest thing. Consequences? What consequences? Oh, yes, the baby thing. Easy. You just kill it. Problem solved.
So how can those young people be blamed for indulging their blood lust? We all have it in us. And if the pleasure is the only thing that matters in sex, why shouldn't they be able to indulge this other pleasure? If the only thing that matters about another person is the pleasure he can give you, then why should it be wrong to get pleasure from killing? If it's all right to kill an unborn child, doesn't that mean that lives are disposable, anyway? It took thousands of years of moral teaching to curb our primordial passions so we could function in large societies. It took one generation of idiots to cancel it. This is where it's got us.
Life is cheap now. People get more upset about puppy dogs than they do about our systematic baby killing. Maybe this was one of the lessons these young people learned at school. I happen to know that there was an abortuary adjacent to Shoreline School where these kids would have known about it, seen it every day. What more evidence do they need that to our modern culture life is no longer sacred. I don't know if it's still there, and I didn't figure out what it was until some time after I had occasion to visit the premises. That was several years ago but I still remember the smell. I have worked in hospitals and know the smell of blood and death, but this was something different. I can still smell it sometimes. What a handy place for it, right next to a school. Just like the tattoo parlour right next to Vic High in Fernwood.
I think future generations are going to look back on our age with horror. How could we have done this thing? With the example of Hitler's Final Solution to instruct us, it turns out we have have learned nothing.
The memory of Reena Virk has a way of intruding on my perception of this beautiful waterway. It's almost always calm and serene. Did any of Reena's tormenters live in one of those fancy houses lining the hills? I often wonder about that.