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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Tamerlan Tsarnaev Death Photo; Google Searches I'd Like to See

The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp

If you google Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the name of the dead Boston Marathon Bomber, the very first prompt Google offers is "death photo."

I do not understand why the most popular item of information people would want in reference to the Boston Marathon bombing is a photo of the bomber's naked corpse.

The photo appeared twice in my facebook feed. I saw it without choosing to see it.

Tsarnaev's face is mottled purple and black, but his torso is that shade of death green that is translated as "pale" in the poetic and terrifying phrase for death from the Apocalypse, "Behold, a Pale Horse." The word John used in the Apocalypse to describe the color of death was not "pale," it was "chloros," "pale green." There is an interesting discussion of what word to use, pale or green,
here.

I'm not interested in judging or condemning or playing holier than thou with those who want to see the "death photo." Wanting to view a given photo, or wanting to show that photo to others, doesn't make you a bad person, and not wanting to see that photo doesn't make you a good person.

I don't like looking at corpses. I was a nurse's aide for many years. I saw broken flesh, human decay, and corpses. I washed corpses, and, much worse, open, festering wounds. I worked in rooms so rank with the smell of rotting flesh that it was all we could do to avoid spontaneous vomiting.

I asked on facebook. Friends said that seeing Tsarnaev's corpse gave them a sense of justice served. I can understand that.

I wonder who took the photo. I wonder what their motivation was. I wonder if it is legal and if there will be any penalty involved. I wonder if they received payment from a tabloid for the photo.

I am just very curious about this.

I guess it kind of boggles my mind that "death photo" is the most popular search. I want Google users to be asking more serious questions. "Tamerlan Tsarnaev ideology." "Tamerlan Tsarnaev motivation." "Tamerlan Tsarnaev justification for murder of innocent civilians." "Tamerlan Tsarnaev how to defeat." "Tamleran Tsarnaev how to prevent." Google searches I would like to see as most popular.

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