In light of recent events, it can be difficult to have faith in our government, other people in society, and our health care system. This past week the United States has experienced the largest mass-shooting casualties in this country at a night club in Orlando, Florida where 49 are dead and 53 are in the hospital for gun-shot wounds. When did society get like this? It feels like reading about a mass shooting has become a daily routine; fearing for family and friends on a daily basis. We need to take back this country. There needs to be stronger security at the doors of night clubs, concerts, public events where the only thing that you are allowed to bring is anything that is in a clear plastic bag. Sporting events have metal detectors and regulations on bags so why isn’t it enforced in other areas of entertainment? History is always doomed to repeat itself unless we learn from it. We live in a different world now, one where mental illness is ignored, extremists are a huge threat, and where getting a gun seems to be like getting candy at a convenient store.
Now, I understand that the right to bear arms is apart of the constitution and that people hunt, but did you know that 36 people die daily from gunshot wounds and that guns are rarely used in a self defense situation? We need to reconnect with humanity. We need to show that love, support, and peace overcomes violence, hatred, and power. This is not just a one time incident that is going to go away. We see powerful figures like Donald Trump spout hatred on a daily basis in his presidential campaign yet still a large percentage of American society supports him and we expect to protect ourselves through war, brute force, and more violence? Violence only causes more violence and to stop it we need to take a look at the deeper issue that is causing all of it.
You know that saying, “That person has an old soul.” I heard that a lot throughout my youth and I think I am now starting to understand it’s true meaning. People who have old souls connect with difficult situations on an emotional level that indescribable. We understand situations well beyond our years. We hurt for people we don’t know. Every time I read about a mass-shooting, a killing of a young adult’s life destroyed by a senseless act of violence (Christina Grimme), or a shooting of yet another parent who’s children now have to grow up without their father/ mother (UCLA Shooting) breaks my heart and I cry every time I hear about them. In a world where the threat is no longer overseas and is beckoning at our front doors, we need to find the hope to believe that most people are truly good. We need to learn to find closure when none can be found, when an action can’t be explained.
Close your eyes and turn on the voices of Billie Holiday, Amy Winehouse, Frank Sinatra, Angelina Jordan, or Grace VanderWaal. These voices can take you to another world full of empathy, heart, and compassion that people have difficulty expressing. Why is it so hard to tell someone you love them or cry in front of a person that cares about you. Society has this thought that crying or showing emotion is a sign of weakness, but I think it is a sign of strength; it shows vulnerability and humility. Something that we can all use a lesson in. In the words of Jimi Hendrix, “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”