Paris. San Bernadino. Istanbul. Brussels. Orlando. Berlin. Westminster. Stockholm. Egypt. And most recently, San Bernadino, again.
In the words of Futurama’s Dr. Farnsworth, “I don’t want to live on this planet anymore.” But here I am.
I grieve for the families who suffered in the aftermath of these massacres. How could they know that when they said goodbye to their loved ones as they left for work, a train or plane, that that would be the last time?
I live in the relatively low-key, sleepy beach town of Ventura, so I haven’t really worried about my city being a target of such terrorist attacks. But I fear for the day I might be proven wrong. Now, I tend to wonder if that dumb meme I showed a family member, or a reminder to pick up soymilk from Trader Joe’s will be the last things they’ll have heard me say.
I feel that these terrorists are destroying more than just lives, but the dreams of those who might have pursued them were they alive today and even the dreams of those still living and breathing.
I have dreams to embark to several more corners of the world, and perhaps even pursue graduate school overseas. But reports of terrorist threats here, there, everywhere make me uneasy, though I’ve vowed not to live in fear.
Of course, those aspirations are just my story. There are countless others, plenty more important than mine.
And one of the reasons why I’m not sure I want to have children is not because I’m afraid I might night be taken as seriously as a career woman or whatever, but because of the undoubtedly terrible world they’ll grow up in.
Idealistically, I’d like to think that it’s up to my generation and the ones that follow to help reshape our world into a better, peaceful place to live.
I’d also like to think that we’ve moved past racial prejudices, sexism and discrimination against certain minorities (although these minorities probably still do or will face prejudice at some points in their lives, unfortunately) but my hope quickly dissipates when I hear ISIS terrorists/a shooter has once again targeted a gay nightclub in Florida, a Coptic church in Egypt or innocent schoolchildren on a playground.
I honestly don’t know if things will get better. But I hope—by God, do I hope—that these tragedies will compel mankind to realize the opportunities to fight for good. There seem to be so many opportunities for this as I read the headlines, but it’s unfortunate that they’ll be rooted in the ashes of those whose lives were ended so abruptly.