Politicizing Tragedy

The title is not a suggestion.

When the loss of any human life occurs during everyday happenings, be it walking on a city street, eating in a restaurant, or participating in an event that means the world to you, it is tragic.  When that loss of human life is numerous, and the injury count staggering, it is horrific.  The events of Sunday’s Las Vegas shooting during a country concert was a horrifying display of tragedy on a large scale.

And then, two different people, working for two different networks, had the idea to turn this tragedy into a justification, if you will.

They politicized the tragedy, indicating that the people who attended the concert and died/were injured likely Trump voters.

Folks, there’s your “justification.”  This supposedly makes it ok.

No, it does not make it ok!

A tragic loss of life is not a time to be political.  In fact, it is the one time politics should be put aside in favor of human decency.  Mourning loss and praying for those still alive, as well as their families, is crucial at this time.  And if you don’t pray (I understand if you don’t), you must still cast aside any reservations you have about a political affiliation and know that this was, in fact, a horrible tragedy.

When one attends any event where they are grouped together and sharing a common interest, nothing else matters.  The color of your skin, who you voted for, your social standing.  None of that matters.  What matters is the reason you’re standing next to that person – you’re there for the same thing!

And to group people in a manner that is presumably unfavorable to others – in this case, implying that everyone who was there and a victim was a “Trump voter,” or that “Trump voters” are the kind of people who attend country concerts – is absolutely the worst kind of thing you can say.

When tragedy happens on this scale, you have to ask yourself if anything else matters about a person other than who they are and what they were doing at the exact moment the incident happened.  When one person decided over 500 injuries and 50-plus deaths were the order of the day, what was his motivation?  Was it political, was there something very wrong with his worldview, perhaps he was unable to cope with something in his life, whether it be mental health, physical health, or situational matters (financial, did someone wrong him?).  We don’t know what his motivation was – we just know what happened.  And what happened was horrible.

And the aftermath?  That was based on overly misguided perception of people and who they are.

Listen, I’m not defending Trump.  Yes, I voted for him.  No, I don’t regret my decision at the time.  He says alot of stupid stuff that he shouldn’t say on a world stage.  He’s brash, he’s tough, and yes, he pulls no punches.  It’s not always a good thing to be the loudest person in the room.  But to automatically group people into what is deemed unfavorable (in this case, as his supporters) and that’s why this happened is just plain wrong on a human level.  This is hate for the sake of hate, and that is a terrible way to be.  This is the type of opinion that hinders any type of progress.  Yes, people say Trump hinders it (I agree, he does at times).  But when they’re the right words and the right actions, people will still disagree to the point where it disrupts progress.  So yes, while progress is supposed to be a two-way street, it seems to be a no-way street at times.

Last I checked none of this – hate for the sake of hate, disagreeing to the point of hindering progress, and saying the wrong things (whoever says them, no one is innocent!) to divide people – isn’t what makes America great.

As I’ve said when I’ve written about these types of issues in the past, you are welcome to disagree with me.  I just hope you’ll do so respectfully.  And if nothing else I’ve said or done that you’ve liked, appreciated, tolerated, or walked away smiling (because I tend to write about the more positive things of life, rather than focus on the negatives) means anything, then you have the choice to either ignore this or end our friendship.  That’s up to you, but before you go, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read this.


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