My heart goes out to everyone in Paris impacted by the recent terrorist attacks. Watching the events unfold on Friday November 13, 2015 left me with a pit in my stomach and the growing realization that the concept of peace seems like a unicorn; beautiful, idealist, and non-existent. It can be scary for adults and children alike to see the horrors happening across the world with what seems like increasing frequency. While the attacks in Paris may not directly affect many of us living in Saskatoon, the threat of terror on the Western world may cause individuals to alter plans, especially when it comes to travel. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind when thinking about terrorist attacks.
1. Keep it in perspective. Any terrorist attack that happens in the Western world dominates the news stations and social media, understandably so. It’s not uncommon to hear about other attacks that have happened as well, which can make it seem like it is happening more frequently than it is. We are more likely to be involved in a car accident than a terrorist attack, yet the frequency of car accidents doesn’t keep people off the roads. Remember that these are still rare attacks.
2. Take a T.V. break. It can be overwhelming to continually take in the negative commentary and violent images. Despite the horror going on in Paris, there is still so much good in the world. Redirect your attention and energy to the good in your local community. Focus on some of the hope and beauty that is emerging out of the terror (have you seen the pianist playing John Lennon’s Imagine?)
3. Seek out community. Out of terrorist attacks comes a solidarity amongst many of the world’s people. We are strong, brave, and will not compromise our rights and freedoms. Look to become a part of the bigger picture. Maybe this means showing respect at a candle light vigil or donating blood in your local community. Maybe it means doing some volunteering in your area for a cause you believe it or even donating to a global campaign. Get involved in whatever way you can because small acts of kindness grow and spread.