November 13, 2009
Why?By Miguel A. Guanipa
I wonder who will be slated to get that coveted first interview with Maj. Nidal Hasan. With Obama's luck, it will probably be Fox News.
Like me, I'm sure there are a lot of people waiting to hear what Mr. Hasan has to say.
What will be his excuse? How will he explain why he woke up one morning and thought it would be a good idea to kill as many of his fellow soldiers at Fort Hood as he could?
But would Mr.Hasan be able to recognize in his unstable state of mind that he is indeed mentally unstable? And if he is indeed mentally unstable, how did he rise so far in the military ranks that he qualified to become a psychiatrist and actually engage in the counseling of others?
But that is not the most important question at this juncture.
What we would like to know is this: What drove Mr. Hasan to do what he did?
Was he upset with the guy who made him breakfast that morning? Maybe the serving of scrambled eggs instead of his very explicit request for sunny-side-up was the straw that broke the camel's back. (Side note: the reference to a camel is part of a generally accepted idiom and is in no way intended as a derogatory pun or to offend Middle Eastern sensitivities.)
Is it possible that Mr. Hasan got tired of watching reruns of American Idol? Or perhaps he finally had it with Simon Cowell's insensitive remarks toward the young hopefuls who are simply trying to take their best shot at fame and recognition. (Again, no pun intended.)
Perhaps he got stuck in traffic that day and an ugly American made a rude gesture at him for bypassing the gridlock to his exit by using the breakdown lane.
Or maybe it's something deeper.
Perhaps Mr. Hasan's family did not celebrate Christmas, so he thought of himself as a deprived child. Unable to find an outlet for this suppressed anger directed at the indifference of his parents, he channeled it and took it out on his army peers in one dramatic outburst.
Or could it be that Mr. Hasan had been turned down by women at the local bar one too many times, and sought to relieve his despair by going out on a shooting rampage?
Maybe he'd been harboring some resentment against the guys at the base who slipped some laxatives into his coffee last April Fools' day and decided it was time for payback. Those privates in the barracks do tend to play a lot of practical jokes. Evidently they overestimated Maj. Hasan's sense of humor.
But maybe -- just maybe -- it's something that arguably makes a lot more sense.
Maybe Mr. Hasan finally realized that he was not living up to the explicit mandates of the religion to which he claims fidelity. Maybe he recognized that as a Muslim, he was not being true to the commands written in the book that explains how he is supposed to conduct his life.
Maybe Mr. Hasan became burdened with the conviction that he could no longer endure a life of hypocrisy, and, perhaps on that very day, he came across a passage in the Quran that he had skipped over many times before. Maybe that day, he read sura 2 :191 and recognized the need to overcome the disquieting cognitive dissonance between his daily existence and the creed to which he had thus far made mediocre attempts to remain faithful.
And so he decided to eschew any further compromise and act in accordance with his beliefs, whatever the consequences.
But perhaps we should wait for that interview and see what he says before we jump to any conclusions.
Maybe then Mr. Hasan will tell us what I think most people already know, but are too scared to say in the open. Given that there are (allegedly) roughly three to five million Muslims residing in this country, it is possible that Mr. Hasan is not alone when it comes to the way he views the world and what his religion requires him to do in order to improve it.