Childish Nonsense

Exploring Children's Literature

Anger May Be Appropriate, But …

on June 26, 2015

The recent events in Charleston are upsetting on so many levels. Understandably, most people are angry. And everyone wants to comment. But most of need to be careful we’re not just adding fuel to an already-raging bonfire.

Yes, much of the media is skewed with rhetoric that favors the white majority. Yes, we need to get guns off the streets, particularly automatic weapons. Yes, the Confederate flag has become a symbol of hate, at least to most people. Yes, we should all pick our words carefully. Words do matter. The discussions too often deteriorate into shouting matches and accusations, though. And nothing is accomplished beyond making everyone angry again.

So, beyond denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance, what should we do in response to all the violence and, yes, racism? And beyond making sure that the shooter never again hurts anyone in this manner.

I’m hoping that something positive can come of the latest horrific event. I’m hoping that our acts of kindness are not so random.

Attend religious services at a house of worship you’re unfamiliar with. Go to an AME church or a synagogue or a mosque. Bet anything the usual attendees will “be nice” to you. If you can find out about any outreach program they have, plan ahead and show up with nonperishable food or clothing or supplies for a woman’s or homeless shelter. Go the extra mile to show you care. And take the children with you.

Attend a rally or commemoration for a cause.

Volunteer for a cause.

Pay for someone else’s groceries or meal. Someone struggling with the kids. An elderly couple. Or just someone who looks unhappy. You’d be amazed how much goodwill even $20 will buy.

Read a book or other material (to yourself or with the kids) you might not normally read. Don’t make me outline which ones are available.

Come up with your own solution. One step at a time.

Get to know your neighbor and live with a purpose, for goodness sake.


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