Today, I was in my home town and passed a building that used to be a convenience store. When I was living a few blocks away, I would stop at the store often and the same woman was usually there every evening.
The woman, who I thought was probably fifteen years older than I was, usually worked the evening shift. She had a young teenage daughter that would sometimes be in the store during her shift. From the short conversations we had, I gathered she was single mom with the usual worries about raising her daughter. Her daughter was at that age where the lack of supervision could end with a ruined life.
Over time I moved and stopped going to the store. Years later, I was watching a show about crime. It was a stark show that had a segment where the news crew reached the crime scene before the police secured the area. A part of the segment showed a woman sitting on the floor with a bullet wound in her forehead. She was alive, coherent, but obviously in distress. I suddenly realized it was that clerk. I, also, remembered reading about the robbery when it happened. The report had given a name, which I never knew, and a later report stated she died. I never put the pieces together. I didn't know who had died.
I've wondered what happened to her daughter; whether she had family, or ended up in foster care. I, also, wondered about whether she moved on, or was forever scarred and would never have any semblance of a normal life.
Evil stalks us every day. We don't notice it, or ever really feel the consequences, until it destroys someone we know or love. It's a harsh reality that's a punk robber with a gun, or a government without conscience that destroys all detractors in the cruelest methods imaginable. It will never be completely eliminated, but it can be isolated. This requires a society that condemns evil and handles those that stray to evil without hesitation. If not, there's only anarchy and the unbridled power of those without compassion.