A MOMENT OF SILENCE

MOURNING MAY PROVIDE A TIME TO REFLECT CALMLY ON THE LANGUAGE OFHATE. BUT CAN A TRAGEDY, EVEN OF OKLAHOMA'S MAGNITUDE, TRANSFORM THE NATURE OF POLITICAL DISCOURSE?

Sometimes talk is healing. sometimes silence works better. So at 9:02 a.m. on Wednesday, exactly one week from the moment of the explosion that tore apart hundreds of lives, Oklahoma City came to another halt. Gathered at what used to be the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, rescue teams briefly stopped picking through the wreckage and stood in quiet reflection. All over the city people bowed their heads. Outside of town, traffic stopped along Interstate 40. Beyond, in towns and cities around the country, in churches and offices and in the White House, the same pause was observed. For one minute,...

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