As I write these words, it's still too early to know who perpetrated the bloody attacks on the Boston Marathon, or even to guess at the motivations. Nevertheless, the two explosions undeniably represent a premeditated act that deserves classification as unspeakably evil. No "higher cause" can conceivably justify the shattered lives and severed limbs. The Boston bombings remind us that brutality remains a constant presence in our world, and that cruelty should discredit relativists who blur distinctions between good and evil, civilization and barbarity.
We must also recall that those who defend us against random violence—soldiers, police officers, first responders, doctors and nurses—toil on the side of decency, regardless of politics. We must recognize their efforts, and respond decisively against the warped mentality of terrorists who make pain and destruction their primary focus.