My city is a city of empathy & service. We research problems and search for solutions in our great universities. We save lives in our amazing hospitals. We preserve and protect the sacred knowledge of society—its history, its meaning, its beauty—in our cultural institutions. We lighten the loads of millions of suffering people in our countless non-profit social welfare institutions. People come to my city from all over the world to educate and be educated, to save and be saved, and to further enrich the world through our individual skills and our beliefs in commonwealth and knowledge.
For reasons as of yet unknown, but surely insane and cruel, you brought your hate into our city full of love on its most celebratory day. Like a coward you have murdered at least three completely innocent people (including an eight-year-old boy), maimed over a hundred more and traumatized even hundreds after that, all of whom were simply standing in a crowd. On top of that you have taken the most Boston of Boston days—where half a million people congregate along a 26.2-mile stretch of road to celebrate Spring, charity, physical endurance and global culture—and turned it into carnage, trauma and fear. Whatever you think the problems are in this world, they were surely not represented there on the corner of Boylston and Exeter. Most likely those problems reside only in your demented soul(s).
I hope to God that you are alive and in prison on April 21, 2014, so you can watch us throw the biggest fucking marathon party the world has ever seen. A 117-year tradition in a nearly 400-year-old city cannot and will not be stopped by how ever many monsters were responsible for this. If anything, your grievous actions will be an annual reminder for the rest of our lives that we must not take the love and goodwill in our society for granted, that we must collectivize our strengths in determined measures to snuff out the evil embers from people like you.
I, for one, will start my morning next Patriots' Day on the Boston University campus at the sculpture to our adopted son, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He said that, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." And then I will cheer madly for the renewal of Spring, and the runners, and the families, and the charities worked for, and my beloved city. I will think of and probably cry for those dead and maimed this afternoon and then cheer some more, as if to fill the gap of too few cheers from the year before.
We, the hundreds of thousands of strangers will greet each other on the streets with purpose. We will be an army of goodwill to drive out the darkness, an army of love to drive out the hate. I will think about how great it is to live in this city, how great it is to be from this city and how great it is to share this moment again with the rest of the world. I will think about how it now means so much more.
But I probably won't think about you.