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Thoughts on the Tragedy in Arizona

As most of you know, a congresswoman was shot today in Arizona during an event at a grocery store to bring out her constituents to discuss issues face to face and someone opened fire, gravely injuring her and killing six people. It’s a lot to take in.

I feel like people around my age and younger don’t have a full realization of the horrors of the world and how things like this happen all the time in other countries. But here we are, an elected official in public with her voters in an attempted assassination here in the United States, and it has angered me so much that I am talking about it to want to remember how I’m feeling and to express disgust with humanity at large and how we seem to stay so silent about the issues, problems, and outright hate that continues to exist right here in America.

Racism is rampant, people are actually voting to TAKE AWAY rights from gay people and it makes me sick. Politics in recent memory has been this line in the sand, liberal or conservative, Republican or Democrat with big news sources and politicians themselves having rock star mentalities vs. talking about issues and looking to better the country which in turn is just adding to the anger the country has been feeling in these times, with aim taken at politics in an unhealthy way.

It’s becomes an almost blind hate for a politician or even another person that isn’t in their political party, or disagrees with you on a hot button issue. The call comes out that if you want change, or disagree with them then take action AGAINST them and there is this HATE for elected officials doing public service and it’s been scary, and today it got worse.

People that are high profile perpetuate this by telling people to rise up with the wrong use of language and selfish intent. Humanity through history kills more than it loves and this country has this incredible and unique way of life that had led us to my generation vs. the ones before to not have this happen all the time like in most places of the world, but tragedies like this are a reminder of how things can spiral to having government officials gunned down at a grocery store. It’s not far fetched for things to completely fall apart over time if there is not change.

More information will come out on the motive of this attack but regardless of that outcome, I implore anyone reading this to not forget this day- to take a step back, and realize the gravity of what took place.

Think about how you treat others and view politics and beliefs. It’s okay and even good at times to disagree but don’t hate the person you disagree with. This idealogical personal attack with politics is creating anger that perpetuates hate, and here we are now with elected officials as targets.

Politicians on both sides need to step up and not be so damn political for a change now that this has happened and acknowledge their mistakes in how they discuss their opinions and run campaigns. It can change if they change it, but it’s not likely to happen. They will continue looking out for themselves, their own agenda, and in some cases, knowing their sound bytes can lead to more TV appearances, book deals and reality shows. The use of guns and analogies to violence in political speech will now cease due to this event, but for how long?

Realistically, this will not be the last time something like this happens and we need to break away from isolationist feelings many of us here in America have, and take pause at the fact this horror is day to day life for people in Mexico and other countries. We remain fortunate to live in this nation, but that fact should not put the blinders on to the major human decency issues and hatred that plague the country at large.

I’ll end with a quote from Congresswoman Giffords herself from March of 2010.

“Most of our country is in the middle, but we do have these polarized parts of our parties that get really excited. And that’s where again community leaders, not just the political leaders, all of us need to come together and say, there’s a fine line here.”

There is a line and it’s been crossed, we can only hope this act brings even some element of change. Everyone can stop senseless hate in small pockets. We can be better. Even in a small dose, as we all have our own lives to live, and people we can reach.

Have the conversation, talk about these issues, and hope for change.

Benny

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