Stop the Hate

From the Associated Press: “A man with the same name [as the shooter] posted on Gab before the shooting that “HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

HIAS is a nonprofit group that helps refugees around the world find safety and freedom. The organization says it is guided by Jewish values and history.”

That isn’t fake news. That is hatred, fear, and evil. A man has killed 11 people in a house of worship, and it appears to be a hate crime in every sense of the phrase.

Let’s not make the mistake of dismissing this as the actions of a random “crazy person.” This crime was the latest in a long line of anti-Semitic and anti-immigrant atrocities, stretching across the eras.

And it’s an example of why we can’t be silent, why we can’t ever stop standing against hatred, division, and fear. The political climate in our country is dangerous. The lack of civility, the lack of respect for humanity, and the absolute lack of empathy is adding fuel to the fire for evil.

The discussion about immigration and refugees is a good example. It is absolutely possible to have differing ideas about how immigration laws and border enforcement should be approached without falling into the angry rhetoric, name calling, and fear mongering that surround the issue.

Everyone involved is a human being, and everyone would do well to remember that. The man who posted those comments on a social media site, picked up a gun, and killed 11 innocent people lost touch with humanity, and found other voices to encourage his hatred.

This is not a Conservative, Liberal, Democrat, or Republican issue. This is far greater than that. The last year of American history has seen white supremacists marching in the streets, massacres at concerts and high schools, and now this act of Xenophobia and anti-Semitism.

We must end it, by standing against hate with conviction and kindness.

“Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

About Brian Keith Wallen

Singer-songwriter and guitarist from Indiana. Proud dog dad.
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