Shame, guilt, and fear are remnants of atrocities more difficult to shake than the loss of someone we hold near, for we justify our actions in our personal psyche, and over time in our shared mythology. War criminals become heroes as time gives way to a rewritten history, in oral tradition, book, and song, but we carry the burden just the same. Generations to come confront what has been done. How many churches, how many government bodies have in the past two decades apologized for the actions of their forebearers, decades, even centuries ago?
I feel sorrow for those who bury their dead. But I feel pain for those who point and fire a weapon not in self-defense, but in an act of fear, for they live on with the burden of what they have done.