We Are All A Part Of It – Responding To Hate

Source: Huff Post

It has been an eventful couple of weeks to say the least. The national and international headlines were full of soul crushing events both at home and abroad. Just to mention a few: An American soldier named Robert Bales walked into the midst of an Afghan community and in cold blood shot 16 people dead, including nine children and three women, one of whom was pregnant. An unarmed 17-year-old black high school student, Trayvon Martin, was tragically shot and killed in Florida. A terrorist in France killed seven people in a nine-day shooting rampage against paratroopers, two of whom were fellow Muslims, and innocent Jewish schoolchildren. Last, but not least, Shaima AlAwadi, a California resident of Iraqi Muslim background and mother of five children, was beaten to death with an iron bar in her own home. According to the police reports, there was a note left on her body, which read: “Go back to your country, you terrorist.”

Once again we are painfully reminded that hate and violence comes in all possible forms, shapes, colors and religious and ethnic backgrounds. Needless to say, these events are utterly despicable, reprehensible and disgusting. They all challenge our trust in the innate good of humanity and they continue to pump fear, hopelessness and despair into the hearts and minds of many. And again, I state the obvious: They all need to be condemned with the strongest possible words, loved ones need to be remembered in thoughts and prayers and most importantly, the lessons that these tragic events teach us need to be learned so that similar disasters can be prevented in the future.

Often, however, these lessons, regrettably, are not properly discussed–let alone used as powerful wake up calls or forces of change for a better future. Often, we put the blame in the wrong place and/or marginalize these events in our individual and collective minds. We dismiss them as the works of a few rotten souls and distance ourselves from them as if we have nothing to do with it. They quickly disappear from our news headlines and our discussions until hate and violence show their ugly faces again.

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