These brothers were going to expensive schools, living in an expensive city...the older brother had a wife and child. Now reports of extensive travel to Russia. Who was funding all of this? Where was their money coming from? Any reports on this?
Ah, I now see Bourne's post. Sorry, no sympathy for their hardships. They placed one of those bombs next to a child. They were given scholarships, public assistance and help from kindly American neighbors. And they respond with carnage.
Stating the facts about their living conditions stops short of extending them sympathy. It simply presents the truth for observation and hopefully deeper comprehension.
Saying Boston is a wealthy city is like saying Dallas or NY is. Yes, many parts are--and there is also extreme poverty in any big city. The boys were living with their family in a poorer part of town on the top floor of a building subsidized by government funding. The younger would never tell his friends where he lived, saying only "Cambridge." His dad was a car mechanic who dreamed of opening his own shop here in the USA but never did, due to inability to grasp the English language. So he worked odd jobs for $10/hour to try to make ends meet. He may have wanted the American dream for his family, but didn't have the capacity to pursue it. He ended up getting brain cancer and went for treatment in Germany. His elder son (age 30) was attending community college (not expensive), and it seems dropped out of that program recently. The younger son, brilliant, was able to take U of Mass Dartmouth courses due to the scholarship awarded him. The kid was also gifted athletically, and so was fortunate to have an inbuilt set of peeers who thought they knew him--and did, to an extent.
It'd be wrong to say DT blew up innocents because he was poor or because his dad had cancer. It'd also be wrong to say, "this could not have happened because he seemed so normal and likeable." It DID happen. So it's important to acknowledge that even seemingly 'normal' people aren't always what they seem to be. Like the psychologist said on the news this morning (and I loathe psychobabble, but I believe this is true)--every person has 3 selves: their Real self, their Feel self, and their Ideal self (exhibited to others). Sometimes these 3 are almost completely merged...and you have a healthy individual. Sometimes these are are great odds within a person, and increasingly so with age and circumstance. That can lead to mental deterioration, and even to evil, tragic outcomes. A person's still responsible for his choices, of course--goal is not pity here, but perspective.
Source for some of facts mentioned above: