Locally, a 12-year-old toy poodle was found bludgeoned to death at the bottom of the cellar stairs belonging to an elderly couple who were not at home during a daylight break-in on Tuesday.
A veterinarian made the cause-of-death determination, according to Easthampton police.
The story was given a lead role on the front of today's newspaper.
Internationally, the recent beheading of two American freelance journalists covering conflicts in the Middle East remains a lingering horror ... even politicians are interested.
It's hardly a new observation to recall the quote attributed to the one-time Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin: "One death is a tragedy. The death of millions is a statistic."
The mind recoils at the notion of a very particular brutality: It is insanely cruel that the viscerally-innocent should suffer... children, animals, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters: Taken one at a time, this is a horror.
I wonder what number turns tragedy into statistic. Is its basis sheer laziness or simple incapacity? Whatever it is, I think it is worth admitting -- weeping has its limitations and its excuses. Just because something is forgiven does not necessarily imply that it is forgiveable.
Or anyway, that's my guess.