Monday, January 17, 2011

The expanse of the human heart

As we discuss these issues, let each of us do so with a good dose of humility. Rather than pointing fingers or assigning blame, let’s use this occasion to expand our moral imaginations, to listen to each other more carefully, to sharpen our instincts for empathy and remind ourselves of all the ways that our hopes and dreams are bound together.

- President Barack Obama, Tucson, Arizona, January 12, 2011

Today Mark Kelly showed us exactly what that looks like.

The astronaut husband of Gabrielle Giffords, the politician shot through the head in the Arizona massacre nine days ago, indicated today he would be prepared to meet with the parents of the alleged gunman to express his forgiveness.

Mark Kelly, who has been beside his wife's hospital bed since the shootings in Tucson on 8 January, said he probably would see the parents of Jared Lee Loughner, who has been charged with the massacre in which six people died and 14 were wounded.

In an interview with Diane Sawyer of ABC, to air on the US network tomorrow, Kelly said he had empathy for the parents. "You know, I don't think it's their fault. It's not the parents' fault. I'd like to think I'm a person that's somewhat forgiving. And they've got to be hurting in this situation as much as anybody."

Kelly, the father of two teenage girls from his previous marriage, said: "I have children. And they must, I'm sure they love their son. And they must be as distraught over this as all of us are."

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