I’m going to keep today’s post short and simple because the solution to what happened this weekend (and every day before and after) is just that: short and simple. It’s hard to leave a weekend like this feeling anything but anger and sadness. Surprised? Not so much. Events like what occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia happen on a daily basis, they’re just oftentimes not as explicit, violent, or demonstrated on such a mass scale. The thing about racism, white supremacy, xenophobia, religious intolerance, homophobia, and sexism–more specifically–is that they are insidious and they don’t have to be overt with the stereotypical symbols of hate, like burning crosses, angry mobs, and lynch ropes, to be painful and harmful. Acknowledge that. Acknowledge your own bias and the beliefs you have that cause you to judge and mistreat people who are different from you. Acknowledge your own privilege. Have conversations. Do the work and recognize that that work won’t be easy. Do it anyway because at the end of the day our job on this earth is to make life easier, happier, and better for everyone, not just some. The only way things are going to change is if you do something to change it. 200 + years is a long time to hate others. It’s also a long time to live in fear. Isn’t it time we actually do something about this? Love on someone today. Maybe it starts with love. Maybe that’s the first step in the right direction. Maybe we could at least try.
Mizzou. Kenya. Japan. Paris. Mexico. Baghdad.
Syria. Beirut. Sinai. Nigeria. Yale.
If you’ve recently turned on the news or opened a newspaper, you’ve likely heard or read a story on the above countries and countless others. In one week, nearly 600 people were killed due to terrorist attacks—and those are just the ones covered by the media. So, who decides what makes front page news or gets its own temporary Facebook profile picture filter? Do those filters mean that some lives are more valuable than others? And does any of it really matter? These are some of the questions that sparked a forty-five minute conversation with my high school sophomores, and it was a conversation I’d suggest everyone have.
Nigerian girls missing, Ebola ravaging West African countries, ISIS terrorizing innocent civilians, Bubonic plague spreading throughout Madagascar, and hundreds of thousands of people losing the battle against social justice every. single. day. There’s a lot going on in the world right now, and I oftentimes feel angry, sad, confused, powerless, and just plain tired. Tired of the fighting. Tired of the hatred. Tired of the pain. Tired of the judgment. Tired of it all. When will it end? When will love finally drive out hate? When will darkness give way to light? When will we know justice and peace? When will we be the change we want to see in the world?
I interrupt the “Be a Team Player” series to bring you an important message…
Over 200 Nigerian schoolgirls chose to defy the odds and get an education to better their lives, country, and the world. But educating a girl means granting them with limitless power, and for some, that’s a scary thing. In an effort to showcase their disapproval and put an end to such “defiance,” Islamist militant group, Boko Haram kidnapped (likely assaulted, abused, and sold) these same Nigerian schoolgirls. And how did the Nigerian government and major American news outlets respond? Well…they didn’t. You could say that between the missing Malaysian Airline and the South Korean ferry incident, there’s just not enough room. And what about Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathon? Simply sending empty promises of comfort and peace with very little action. Therefore, millions of protesters took to social media sites in an effort to raise awareness of the issue by using the hashtag bring back our girls.