You are currently located at another pointless dotcom, the personal website of Jonathan Horak. Enjoy.

pointless feeds

RSS 1.0 | RSS 2.0

shameless plug

The Writings on the Stall

Sunday, 2004-11-07

the similarities end at suicide

I happened upon a somber story of a man who committed suicide yesterday at the World Trade Center site. Gemma haunched to read the article and kept mentioning how similar in personality/politics the individual was to me.

The resemblances seem coincidental (I'll be the first to admit). Any young John Kerry supporter would likely match the mold. But piled up, the details did catch me off-guard. Emphasis in the text below means the similarities were particularly striking.

Ground Zero Is Setting of a Suicide, and a Mystery
Robert D. McFadden, The New York Times

In the absence of a suicide note, there was speculation...that Mr. Veal's choice of the site had been intended to protest the re-election of President Bush and the war in Iraq, both of which he is known to have vehemently opposed. [...]

Friends recalled Mr. Veal, who was known as Andy, as calm, upbeat and fun-loving. While some acquaintances said they had seen no signs recently that he was depressed, others said they had noticed that he was not quite himself...

"He didn't have a gun as far as any of us know," Ms. Mauney said. [...]

Besides his commitment to environmental causes, she said, he was passionate about combating poverty, sexism and homophobia.

"He understood all the interconnections of things," Ms. Mauney said. "He had a total grasp of actually all the things that are wrong in the world. And he was very concerned about that." [...]

The area [in Georgia where he lived] is predominantly Democratic in a Republican state.

I know the pain of liberals who believe in this country — just not its current vector. (Sadly) unlike Andy Veal, I see only one possible solution: activism. On a less grim, lighter note, maybe there's a second alternative.


2004-11-09 16:20 / aran hand:

Hi there,

As we think about leaving the country and our despair at what has happened, remember some of the heroes who continued to fight. You can see them in beautiful colors here at Americans Who Tell the Truth.

Here's an example of one of the quotes incorporated into the portraits.

James Baldwin: "People who shut their eyes to reality simply invite their own destruction, and anyone who insists on remaining in a state of innocence long after that innocence is dead turns himself into a monster."


2004-11-09 17:04 / Jonathan Horak:

Aran, thanks for your encouragement, which will definitely fuel the journey.

The portraits and quotes at the site you've mentioned are no less inspiring. Especially that of Martin Luther King Jr: "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it."

2004-11-09 22:40 / Daniel J:

I grew up with Andy Veal. We went to high school together and then we went to college. I just learned of this news today, and I am extremley grief stricken. I never thought that he would ever do anything like this, and I will always remember him for the person he was. I have not seen him in a year or so, but I will always remember the good in him. Also, God Bless his family, as I have known them my whole life as well.

post a comment