Prayers to heal nation in wake of terrorism

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We must come together, stop culture of constant political victimization

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We live in the most prosperous, well-meaning and good-doing nation in the history of earth. But last week, mentally unstable individuals who see themselves as victims, despite many advantages, lashed out.

Terrorist incidents included the attempted pipe bomb assassination of top Democratic officials and critics of the current president, the shooting of African-American innocents at a grocery store in Kentucky (after a failed attempt to get into a nearby African-American church), and the slaughter of 11 Jewish citizens in Pittsburgh who were performing a ritual ceremony at their synagogue. 

We pray for all these victims and their families, and we extend those prayers to a nation where division grows deeper each day. These incidents should serve as a wakeup call to every decent person who has existed peacefully alongside those who believe differently, look differently and think differently for decades.

This attack on our country is coming from within. There is a growing discontent among some, even among those who have every advantage in the job market, in wealth and in privilege. Fears of external threats to our country have become exaggerated and not based in reality. Yet through social media and its lack of responsible editorship, these exaggerated fears have gone viral. And it is a virus, indeed.

We pray for restraint, for responsibility and for tolerance. We pray for a return to this nation’s ideals of the freedoms extended through inclusion. We pray for sympathy and for understanding on both sides of our now-tribal political system. And we pray for true patriots, who believe this nation was created to bring out the best in everyone, show themselves and demand the same of our leaders.

The current level of toxicity is dangerous and could realistically change the fabric and direction of our country. Yet at its core, this is a generous nation — never a perfect one, but at its best, a generous one that strives to reach its ideals. We see that generosity each week in Gillespie County where people reach out to help, donate and support those in need. Yet, the anger that consumes some like those domestic terrorism perpetrators can’t help but make it seem as though we are regressing into a badger-like state.

Let’s get over our own victimization and look past our differences — religion, skin color or politics — and come together. We will always be a collection of unique individuals and we should realize the strengths in our differences.

We are a melting pot, the greatest experiment of humanity in history that represents the promise of light in a sometimes dark world.

 

The coward, then, is a despairing sort of person; for he fears everything,” Aristotle wrote. “The brave man, on the other hand, has the opposite disposition; for confidence is the mark of a hopeful disposition. — Aristotle