We just *can't* have this!
Moment. React appropriately. Kairos.
ITHACA, N.Y. -- We've seen some real tragedy this month. The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School comes to my mind first. Seventeen people gunned down at the most sacrosanct of places -- a *school*. Really, think about that. School is where people go to pass their knowledge down to the next generation, and the next-gen goes to receive it.
The last couple of people I've spoken with from back home have inquired, "What's the reaction been like on campus at IC?" It's disappointing to sort of swirl around the conversations we've had in class on the shooting to get to the final point that there has been no real student reaction to seventeen people being killed at school. I personally am sick of the idea that since we've had Las Vegas, and Orlando, and Sandy Hook, and so many more that we are officially immune. I'm not. If you think I don't care because I'm a student journalist, or a college student you are terribly mistaken. Each shooting hurts more than the last to be honest. I almost broke down covering this one on the radio.
It is no doubt that the students of MSD have spoken out with courage and civility, but we just haven't seen pushback...if any reaction here at Ithaca College -- a school that has made headlines for protesting to right wrongs like racism. I heard someone on a news network say that the MSD students are talking about this in a way that is different, and he may have even said "better" than college students have. My first thought? I was in high school eight months ago. Chill out. Seriously.
I haven't seen any adults, or people involved in *any* shooting respond in this way prompting a CNN Town Hall just a week after the massacre, and garnering the attention of quite frankly the entire country. No matter what side you are on politically -- what these students have done is remarkable. They are an agent for change. They turned tragedy, into action, and appear optimistic about their efforts making a real impact.
We are a nation in need of change. From the NRA to the dems....we ALL agree we cannot lose children in school shootings. That is just absurd. We are losing people who could be the next Steve Jobs, Barack Obama, or Janelle Monae. Or, we're losing someone who could grow old, water their plants each and every day, and smile at their neighbors -- that person is just as important. We cannot lose them.
So...now what? 🤷🏾♂️
I don't know how we fix this, and I never promise that my blog posts will offer solutions. They will show you the bright side...so let's go there, my friend.
It begins with you. Yes, you have some stake in this!!
My politics professor recently told our class that we cannot change the world. She inquired, "What does that even mean?" A student who agreed elaborated on her idea by saying that no matter how you try to change the world, that idea will already have been in the world, so you aren't really changing it. At least that was my understanding. I had never heard this before. Have you??
Let's say the idea is true. You may not be able to change the world. But, I personally believe you can change lives, forever and always. And the most beautiful part? It begins with you.
How do you think of black people? Afro-Latinx people? Bisexual people? Your peers? Your colleagues? Yourself? I encourage you to start evaluating how you mentally picture specific things and people. Let's be real...some rich people, all they have ever seen is money. They have never had to struggle and stretch a $20.00 bill. And yes, they need to learn and respect that grind. You though who may have been there as I have, have an option. Be nice, friendly, and kind and help them do that or you can label 'em snotty and storm off. I guarantee the latter will get you both nooooowhere.
We can all be a bit different, and maybe each of us changing our personal lives will create better versions of ourselves. Maybe it'll make the world a bit better. Maybe just being nice will stop the next mass shooting. We just don't know. But I believe it starts with each of us.
MSD student, Emma Gonzalez took the initiative. Will you? Go us!!
Thank you for reading.
With ❤️and gratitude,