I’m tired of people saying they’re numb to the killings happening daily in America. I’m tired of good people throwing their hands up in despair and claiming they can’t watch the news because it gives them anxiety.
You know who gets to be numb? Children growing up in war zones. The ones who wake up not knowing if this will be their last day on Earth. The ones who may be an orphan by dinner time.
Our numbness, our anxiety is nothing. In fact, it reeks of American privilege. We get to pick and choose which shootings impact us the most. If the news is too much to bear, we can simply turn off the TV and hide from social media. This isn’t the case when you live in a war zone 24/7.
Yes, I’m angry shootings have become a daily occurrence in America. I’m upset my husband has to think about what he’d do during an active shooter scenario on the Metro he rides each day. I’m pissed my children need to do lock down drills.
Mostly, I’m livid over the growing apathy I see among my friends and family. There’s an overwhelming sense that nothing can be done. Some of my Republican friends think more guns is the answer; some of my Democrat friends think gun control will save us. The two sides can’t seem to have a conversation without resorting to name calling. It frustrates me.
The majority of my friends and family, however, seem stuck in the middle, unsure of the right answer. They’re paralyzed by fear; fear of another attack; fear of a coming war; fear of social repercussions.
I wish I could fix things on my own. But I can’t. No one can. It needs to be a group effort – left, right, and middle. All voices need to be heard.
We – Democrats, Republicans, and everything in between – must yank our heads out of the sand and ENGAGE in productive civil discourse. We must push our differences aside and do something. We can no longer use “numbness” as a reason to not engage. We can no longer hide behind our “American privilege” and tune out when things become scary or hard.
What’s happening to our country isn’t a political problem, in my opinion. It’s a social and cultural problem. The majority, those in the middle, need to lead but can’t if they tune out or ignore the violence.
America is on the brink of something – what, I don’t know – but we all can feel it. Whether it’s terrorism threats, social uprisings, or police shootings, I believe we can all agree America is changing.
The question is, is she changing for the better? And if not, what are you doing about it?