Publisher’s Perspective: Finding positive in the wake of tragedy (Opinion)
It’s been nearly three weeks since a helicopter crash took the lives of nine people, including three 13-year old girls and former NBA superstar, Kobe Bryant.
Upon hearing the news that Sunday, I couldn’t help but feel grief and sadness for the families. Social media was littered with similar messages from people about their disbelief. People that were strangers, people that were close friends of the deceased, they all grieved. They all stood together with similar feelings in the wake of the tragic incident.
As a father, I couldn’t help but think about my own family and my own children — how something like that would leave its scar and the pain it will take to climb out from under the weight of the matter and simply try to live life again.
I’ve had to endure more deaths in my time that I care to. For the most part during those times, you inevitably hear someone who you’ve lost contact with mention that it’s been too long – or that you can’t let tragedy be the thing that brings you together. But the reality is, it does.
It galvanizes people. It gives them strength to deal with the matter. It helps mend the frayed edges of reality. And, for the moments afterwards, it allows people to see others not as enemies, but as human beings dealing with the same situation.
It’s unfortunate, but that feeling of everyone coming together didn’t last too long. Enter one presidential impeachment trial and people went back to taking sides, slandering one another and showing that in today’s society, it’s completely ok to look down on someone for their beliefs.
Our human behavior has let us down. We’re all probably guilty of it – some maybe more than others, but to some degree we have forgotten what it’s like to have positive connections and real moments with people.
I don’t foresee the political landscape (both local and national) in the coming year giving us more reasons to bond with one another. It only seems like things will get worse, no matter what the outcome is — especially in the presidential election.
Can we prevent that from being the case? I believe it would be extremely difficult. But I also believe that everyone can do a little better with one simple message.
Don’t let hate be the tie that binds us.
We can be different. We can have conversations from both sides of the fence without being offensive. We don’t have to let anger fuel our daily conversation.
Something beautiful can come from tragedy. As hard as that tragedy is, it always seems to show us what we should be doing instead of what we are actually doing. It just takes you to realize and make the change for the better.
Publisher Rob Galloway can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-542-8046.
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