Many of us are extremely disturbed this morning by the news of the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando. I just read that it is considered the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. To say that I am sick and disgusted by this act is an understatement. I can’t even begin to comprehend why someone would be motivated to do something like this, other than senseless terrorism. The fact that terrorists are willing to target a gay nightclub is no coincidence (in my opinion). This is a huge statement to America (like all terrorism) that these people are willing to target the most unsuspecting groups of people with their violence. From 9/11 to now, it always happens to the people most vulnerable and least connected to the underlying reasons for terrorism. To attack a room full of happy people during a month dedicated to celebrating who they are is the most horrible thing one can do.
As these acts become more frequent, it scares me (and many others I am sure) to want to go out into the world and lead our lives. There is no rhyme or reason to when these things happen and for someone who suffers from tremendous anxiety, it’s easy to want to stay home every day and avoid public situations. My thought here is this. If we change the way we live and start living our lives in fear – terrorists will accomplish exactly what they want. As hard and painful as these events continue to be for us as a society, we need to be bold and live our lives with no regrets. We need to take these tremendous losses and turn them into perspective as to what’s really important in life.
As I travel to a work conference on a Sunday and have to read instructions on how to set up the Mac computer for the booth and iron the display cloths so there are no wrinkles, all I want to say is screw everything. I’m living in a reality where I can be shot at any moment and have to worry about wrinkled displays. This is where perspective comes in. I’m not suggesting we quit our jobs and spend our savings and go crazy. I’m suggesting we live our lives with fewer regrets and what if’s. Tell someone you love them today that may not have otherwise have heard it. Go on your Instagram. Look at the last 30 days. If you died last night are those the things you wanted to do? Commit to doing something you would have done differently this month. If any of the people we lost last night did the same, I bet they’d do some things differently.
My deepest sympathy and condolences go out to anyone who is personally impacted by these deaths. This is a major hit to our country and our community and I’m completely devastated by news like this.