First things first, this is not the post I’ve had in mind. The one I’ve wanted to do will likely be too long. Unless I somehow split it up into sections, but then I think it’s will loose some of its effect. If you don’t mind a “TL;DR” (mostly filled with pictures and videos I found thought provoking) post let me know and I’ll just go forward with it.
January 27th 2015, I work up to the wost surprise I’d ever known.
Her name was Kiran Pabla. She was 24 (she would’ve been 25 on Feb. 28th). She was working for a business degree. She was doing something with her life.
Somehow, in my almost 31 years of being, I don’t recall ever having to go to a funeral of someone I actually knew, let alone someone who had been taken so abruptly. Maybe that’s why this one’s effecting me so much. This one was personal. I may not have known her well, but I knew her enough from working with her. There’s so much tragedy that happens in the news, one can easily become desensitized or feel disconnected. I know I was, it’s hard to know what to think when you know nothing about the situation. Like I might as well have been watching “reality” tv or Jerry Springer. Real people upping the drama for the camera. Makes it easy to chalk it up to “this is why I have little to no faith in humanity” and call it a day. But this time I have been trying to keep up with it. I even set up a Google alert to let me know when a new news report pops up. But all I’m getting at the moment are other sites and cities hearing about it and repeating what’s already been said to join the conversation. I just wish I had more knowledge in laws and politics so I knew how to debate my thoughts accurately, or at least know if they carried any weight. But it seems that for the moment there wont be any new news until the next court appearance on March 9th. So far away!!!
Here’s what’s happening so far.
The next article I came across was this one: http://www.mercurynews.com/crime-courts/ci_27402896/san-jose-jogger-killed?source=infinite
One of her own teachers she’d had for 3 years was sited saying: “I’m alternating between being absolutely devastated and being so mad it hurts,” Weckesser said. “Those young men are taking a minute of fun and this happens, and they’re going to have to live with this.”
I’d found it to be worded weird. Could be that she meant to say they decided to have a minute of fun over driving responsibly and now that decision will have to be lived with for the rest of their lives. Or it could be interpreted as victim blaming. Abuse victims get comments worded somewhat similarly. To list off a few: “Those poor boys’ lives will be ruined because of this.” “They won’t be able to play football anymore!” “The boys’ futures are ruined because of her!” “What did she think was going to happen!?”
Gabriel Esparza, posted $100,000 bail earlier and is scheduled to be arraigned on February 11th. Manuel Maldanado Avalos got a hearing set for February 5th for the judge to consider allowing him to post bail of $100,00.
But thankfully this got smacked down:
Deputy District Attorney My Phuong Truong was sympathetic to the family’s sentiment and objected to a defense attorney’s request that Maldonado-Avalos be released on his own recognizance, asserting that he is a threat to public safety. She also addressed a remark in the courtroom by an apparent friend or relative of Maldonado-Avalos suggesting he was less culpable because his car didn’t hit Pabla.
“They were both equally responsible,” Truong said. “A young woman’s life was cut short because of the actions of these two men.”
“San Jose Vice Mayor Rose Herrera addressed the crowd and said cars treat Yerba Buena Road like a freeway. According to the City’s Department of Transportation, the road has seen four fatalities in the past five years.”
Seriously? You go to a vigil and start mentioning facts like they’re excuses. How about you say what you’re going to do about it! The fact that you’ve let it go long enough to see 4 people die speaks volumes. Because if I see that it doesn’t look dramatically different this time next year I will work to rally people there to draw attention to it.
But wait! There’s a speed radar now!
“Because of the terrible tragedy that happened, we thought outside the box. We figured how could we get something in there immediately,” says Hans Larsen, Director of Transportation with the city of San Jose.”
Now they’ll help you figure out how fast you’re going! How exciting! -_- Regardless of how pointless and useless this will actually prove to be, are we supposed to overlook that they’ve already seen people die there, and this was scheduled to be installed in March??? And it’s something that normally would’ve taken 2 months to order?
Speed Radar Sign Installed Near Scene Of Fatal Street Racing Crash
If they really thought this was the answer, then where was this for the other people who died after the first one?
We know they’re not going to man that area round the clock and those who intend to speed aren’t going to be swayed out of it by radar feed-back. All this will do is bring money back to the city. I say they install speed bumps on that road every so often to keep the people at the speed they need to be on. Because what we DO know is that most racers value their car and most of them have put in a lot of work on them and the last thing they want to do is mess them up. They can’t race if the street is no longer fit for racing.
I’ve read some comments under the articles of at least one person trying to stand up for one of the guys that were racing, and all it makes me think of is this scene from the tv show Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
Actually this has brought up a couple of scenes from that show for me. Like when one of the characters is trying to come to grips with death:
And another characters response to a side character killing one of the main characters once she catches up to him:
I know this took a while for me to post, but it took a few days to calm down the thoughts so there could be some sort of flow and not have it all over the place.
And since I really don’t have any other place to put it, I have a letter to all the people she was close with.
Dear family and friends of Kiran,
I was there with you all yesterday to show my support to you and respect for her. I wanted to speak out, but chickened out. Though it’s probably just as well, I feel I’m a better writer than a speaker (thought who knows how this will turn out) and I definitely wasn’t prepared. I didn’t know her well, but I knew her as well as a co-worker would and I always enjoyed working with her. And as weak of a phrase as it is, I just can’t think of something better, I just wanted to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry that we have a generation that would rather pretend that life is a video game because it’s more fun. I’m sorry that even though media helps get the word out, tragedy and suffering is considered good tv and draws ratings. I’m sorry that while you’re in mourning of a loved one you have to also endure cameras and microphones shoved in your face. I’m sorry that there was a reporter outside the funeral service asking what was probably the same questions you’ve already answered just so they can reference their own video clip. I’m sorry that the city had to learn a lesson at her and your expense. I’m sorry that they think a speed radar is thinking outside the box. I wish you all strength and hope that one day you’ll start to find moments of peace. She may not be physically here, but she’ll never be forgotten, she’ll live on through our memories.