One of the two men who savagely butchered Lee Rigby in Woolwich (yours truly has reported) made a first appearance in court today. In an astonishing show of the level of stupidity now reigning among us, even the newspapers call him “suspect”. There is, in fact, the suspicion that the two men who remained near the man they had just butchered, inviting passers-by to take videos of their feat, might be involved in the fact; but we don’t know, of course. We merely suspect it.
This utter failing of common sense and sane judgment instantly reminded me of another phenomenon familiar to all Catholics: the near-inevitability of salvation. I wonder how many would dare to say today that a sane person shooting himself in the head without one of those very rare, extenuating circumstances to do so (say: the general who knows he will be tortured and executed after his imminent capture) has shot himself to hell with an extremely high degree of probability. Perhaps, they reason, in the time between the pulling of the trigger and the bullet entering his head, whilst the bullet was in full charge towards its aim, the man repented of his act, saying to himself “oh shoot, I shouldn’t have done this! Forgive me, Blessed Virgin!”.
Several examples can be made that are not dissimilar from this one, and you have certainly heard yours. No sane person can make a bomb of himself, and therefore if he does he must not be considered evil, merely confused. Infidels of all kind “love God”, so they must be fine, must they not? Even atheists who “do good” are, we are given to understand, very well placed.
So, who remains? Those who do good are saved because they do good; those who do evil are saved because they don’t know what they do; in the middle there’s no one (Hitler perhaps; or George W Bush) because hey, everyone loves his dog.
Which leads us nicely to the starting point: blindness. The same blindness making us even unable to call day light butchers boasting of their inhuman cruelty “suspects” of what they have done.
If the two claim they’re innocent, this trial will become very strange indeed.
Be assured the trial of the one who, knowing what he does, shoots himself isn’t.