As I write in an editorial today, I just can’t get outraged over the Rolling Stone cover. I’m a little amused by the threats to boycott the magazine being made by people who haven’t bought a copy of Rolling Stone since they got out of college. And I’m a little outraged that the CEOs of CVS and Walgreens think it’s their job to decide which magazine articles their customers should or shouldn’t be allowed to read.
But I’m struck more than ever by the way the Marathon bombings have sparked a public discussion that is 90 percent about feelings. We’ve spent months mourning the victims, praising the police and first responders and cheering the recovery of the survivors, all the while patting ourselves on the back for being “Boston Strong.”
Now our fragile feelings have been assaulted again by a heartless editor’s choice of photos to put on the cover of a magazine. How dare they? Don’t they know we aren’t yet Boston Strong enough to handle a fact-based discussion of how Dzhokhar Tsarnaev ended up blowing a bunch of people up? Don’t they know that we have to be constantly told the kid is “evil” and that’s all there is to say about it?
I’ll have more thoughts on this in my column tomorrow. More to the point, I’ll list some fact-based questions that haven’t been asked because we’ve been obsessed with our feelings.