There was a terrible act of terrorism yesterday at a church in Charleston, SC. My heart is heavy and my soul is deeply aching for the 9 people who were killed, their families, and even for the suffering man who pulled the trigger, whose life has been changed forever. Some would say that at least he is still living and breathing – something that his act denied to 9 other people.
What can any of us do now? How to create value from such a crazy, hateful, ignorant act? How to not allow myself to be filled with hatred for this young man, for his father who bought him a gun for his birthday, for the people leading the meetings he participated in that portrayed African Americans as a threat — even for those who would rather make this an issue of mental health rather than the terrorist act that I believe it is.
I am praying for everyone involved in this — for their peace and happiness, and for them to fulfill their missions in this life and the next. When I think about what has happened, I truly feel the definition of “handicapped”. I feel powerless and weak in the face of this horrible act, and really don’t know what to do, but I am determined to help bring us through this to another way of being — a way that respects difference, values all lives, and encourages dialogue — even from my wheelchair….