In the aftermath of the Boston bombings, many people have mentioned how the city and marathons will never be the same. In a way, this is true. Subsequent races will have tighter security and people will forever remember the horrible act of violence that occurred on that day. But beyond that, nothing will change. Thousands of runners will participate in the Boston Marathon next year and spectators will cheer them on from the exact spots where the bombs went off three days ago. Running will continue to grow as a sport. People will go on with their daily lives.
Just as the London bombings have not kept people from riding subway systems, or 9/11 failed to drive New Yorkers from their skyscrapers, the person (or people) who carried out this attack did not rob us of the joy we get from congregating to celebrate breathtaking accomplishments such as running 26.2 miles. In other words, the perpetrators of this attack failed. But more importantly, they never stood a chance of succeeding to begin with. Events such as the Boston bombings are merely blips in the larger history of humanity, whose long arc trends toward justice and freedom. The number of good and honest people on Earth is simply too large for any terrorist to overcome.
Beyond killing three innocent people and wounding many more, the Boston bombings have changed nothing. The main memory from this day will not be the power of a few violent individuals to change how we lead our lives, but rather their inability to do exactly this. In the days, moths, and years to come we will find the attackers, bring them to justice, and then forget them. The wounded victims will be rehabilitated and go on to enjoy productive lives. Races will be held, concerts will be played, and trips will be taken to all corners of the globe. Life will go on just as it had before 4/15/2013.