The Disappearing Person

(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

When I fly, I prefer an aisle seat. Nine times out of ten, if I am seated next to a window, I’m usually over a wing, and once you’re airborne, there isn’t much to see. But on those occasions when I am scrunched up against a bulkhead, I usually look out the window during takeoff. I can’t see much, but I enjoy the glimpses of everything below. If I am in a warmer climate, I can see all of the blue shapes of swimming pools in backyards. In Utah, there is an abundance of small black dots, which are trampolines.

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During night flights, I am always amazed at the lights from the cities, towns, and factories. As the plane gains altitude, I look at the houses, buildings, and cars, filled with people. I always think about how each car, each house, store, factory, and light represents someone who has a story and identity all their own. I’ll never know them, but they are there just the same.

Maybe it is technology, or maybe it is society as a whole, but we don’t see one another anymore. Unless, of course, someone cuts us off in traffic. Maybe we simply don’t care. Despite the “advancements” society has made, life continues to degenerate to the survival of the fittest.

Consider an episode at the supermarket the other day. A young soccer mom in her Lululemon gear saw me heading for the checkout and turned on the afterburners on her flip-flops to make sure she got there two seconds before me. She turned and flashed me a toothy smile and said, “I guess I beat you!” Since beaning her with a cantaloupe was out of the question, I went to the self-checkout line. There are those moments of frustration and absurdity when we are inclined to forego our better angels for our lesser demons. But what happens when reckless disregard and self-interest become fatal?

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Yes, there are those who will set fires and run people over to preserve abortion. And there is the disturbing trend of euthanasia in the Netherlands, which includes at least five people who lived with autism and wanted to undergo the procedure. Particularly unsettling is this story out of Everett, Wash.

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Fox 13 in Seattle reports that 41-year-old Rachell Everitt was walking along a road at 4:30 in the morning. According to the station, Rachell was struck by five cars. Not one of the drivers stopped. Nathan Bernal was one of the people who stopped to render aid. He told the station, “I saw her on the road and I saw the car that first hit her and two other cars hit her. They [Everitt] deserve something proper, not this — left on the road for everyone to see. It’s horrible.” Someone with a phone recorded people trying to form a protective barrier around Everitt, but traffic did not even slow down. After the initial incident, a second vehicle struck Everitt and threw her into other lanes of traffic. That is when the other vehicles ran her over. Everitt died of her injuries.

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Everitt’s son Dawson Wargin commented:

The first person — that person — knew what they had done. They probably were super shocked at what they had done, and maybe scared and that caused them to go. “If it was an accident, that did in fact make it a lot worse by leaving. You need to own up to your wrongs and to receive the proper justice for that and that’s the only way to feel peace is to go through the proper steps to get there.

As of this writing, no arrests have been made, although police have identified three of the vehicles involved.

Everitt struggled with substance abuse, and there is some speculation that her addiction may have been a factor in her being out at that hour. But Everitt was a person just like all of the people in those cars, stores, houses, and buildings, just like every dot of light visible from the air. She had a story and people who loved her. Her addiction does not change that. Her family hopes that her plight will move others to seek treatment.

In cities from Seattle to New York, the homeless and the addicted become grease for the money-hungry bureaucracy. Why solve these problems when there is so much cash in them? Babies have become choices, and illegal immigrants are made into tools for changing the voter demographic. Race is now a means to accruing power. Children are cash machines for clinics and hospitals that make millions from gender surgery and a means for people to bolster their lifestyle choices or boost their progressive bona fides.

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We are quickly becoming things rather than people. To make matters worse, so many seem to be content with marching willfully toward their own demolition. Ironically, the rise of egomania will ultimately lead to the destruction of the self.

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