I was 12 when the Twin Towers went down, and while I didn’t know anyone in New York, and while no one I knew died in the Pentagon/Towers attacks, I was still affected. I watched my dad pack a bag and, well, go to war.
I don’t know many in France, anyone in Beirut, anyone on the south side of Chicago, or in many other parts of the world where tragedy and fear is the undercurrent of daily life. But I know that in each of these places there is a 12 year old girl who is confused and afraid, wondering if her loved ones will make it home alive the next time they leave, and that is something I can relate to.
So as I reflect on the goings-on of the world, it is her I am thinking about. The girl huddled in the corner of her room, writing poetry or an angry journal entry, perhaps feeling there is no one around her who can answer her questions or understand her fears. I am thinking of her, realizing for the first time what the world is really made of, and being forced to recognize that people are not in fact inherently good.
It would be nice if we could all keep our innocence a little longer, but that is not the case. So, while we cannot protect each other from the dangers of the world, let’s all try to go out of our way to be a littler nicer. Help where it is needed. Leave your fear based biases behind and get to know your neighbors.
And, most importantly, listen to The Beatles. They solve everything.