I have been struck by how much violence I have heard about in the past few weeks. It seems to be more in number of incidents and more violent in nature. You cannot pick up the paper or turn on the news without hearing about a rape, a domestic violence homicide, a stabbing of a young student at school. Thankfully, a young man was arrested before he had time to carry out his plan to terrorize his community by killing his family and then going to the school and killing anyone he could before being killed by police. I am grateful that lives were not taken senselessly. Apparently this young man was fascinated by Columbine and wanted to do something on the 20th anniversary. He had to change plans when he realized that the anniversary fell on Easter Sunday.
I am not sure what is different or what may be the cause of this wave of violence, but for me, it is there and present all the time. What this violence does do is force me to look at what we are doing and how we are doing it and if we need to make changes or adjustments. Is there anything else that can be done to reduce the violence in our society? Not just domestic violence, but all violence.
I know violence is all around us and it happens every day but I continue to hope for the day that I can say violence is a thing of the past. What can we do as a society to make that happen? How can we, as a collective, say enough is enough—we will tolerate no more violence?
We know we must start young. What we teach and instill in our children is critical. It will take society as a whole to stop this violence. It will take all of us being free of judgment and finger pointing and saying it is not me it is them. That attitude is not going to help. Violence doesn’t just happen in poor neighborhoods or within certain racial groups or within any one segment of society. It happens everywhere. Yes, there may be pockets but overall it is everywhere and it is all of our responsibility to do what we need to do to stop it. I encourage you to get involved.Volunteer at Hope House or your child’s school or some other organization. Always model non-violent behavior so others can emulate you. Change starts with each of us.