I had actually planned on a very light and happy post about “newsboy caps” this morning, but in light of all of the craziness I woke up to yesterday, it just didn’t feel right.
Blogs are for the most part a form of escapism from the realities around us. Just for a minute we can shut off the news (real or fake) and instead look at beautiful images, learn new things and find inspiration to make our wardrobes and favorite spaces a little prettier. I try not to delve too much into current events, politics or rhetoric — that’s not what you’re here for. However, in this case I felt as though it wouldn’t be right to gloss over the 59 lives taken, the 500+ seriously injured and the thousands of others impacted by the actions of one individual, during one night in Las Vegas.
I’m sure the next few days and weeks will be a blur of harrowing stories of survival and the pleas and tears of those who lost their loved ones, mixed with blame and finger pointing. Petitions for change will soon follow, as will increased lobbying over gun control. The stocks of gun companies will rise, as people rush to purchase guns before legislation potentially tightens around gun ownership. People might even make money off the tragedy of others. That’s our sad reality and unfortunately, not wholly in our control.
Here is what IS in our control: conscience and empathy.
Because at the crux of all of these recent global tragedies, terrorist motivated or not (that’s a whole other Pandora’s Box!), there lies a gaping hole. The one thing that all of these mass murderers, shooters and inflicters of pain have in common is this: they lack a conscience and the ability to empathize.
Sounds simple enough.
Whether they were born into abuse, lived their lives through poverty and hardship, were brain washed by terrorist propaganda, or simply suffered from mental illness, the perpetrators of these devastating crimes don’t/can’t fathom the devastation their actions can cause. They have an inability to see beyond their “present.” They feel as though they have nothing to lose. They are driven by the power they hold and nothing can stop them.
Yesterday, I spent the day shielding my children from the barrage of news and opinions. They’re young and I don’t want them to live in anxiety and fear. While we may still be a lifetime away from any sense of peace and normalcy, I realize I can instill in my children the conscience and empathy lacked by too many.
Teach your children about how it feels to do something good for others.
Teach your children that a simple act of good (no matter how big or small) could be the one thing that stops someone from hurting themselves, or someone else.
Teach your children why it’s important to make good choices that may not always feel good at the time, but lead to long-term positivity.
Teach your children to help others in need and not just gloss over our societies’ inequalities.
Teach your children how TO love and how to BE loved.
I’d like to think that if any of the perpetrators had these types of lessons instilled, I wouldn’t be typing this right now.
Until next time,