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March 28, 2016

Easter Sunday Bomb kills 70 in Pakistan: Why I Still Cling to Hope.

YouTube screenshot

A bomb goes off in Pakistan and no one says a word.

More than 70 people are dead and at least 300 were injured after a suicide bomb went off yesterday in Lahore, Pakistan.

The attack targeted Pakistani Christians celebrating Easter in Gulshan-e-Iqbal park in the Punjabi capital. It happened near the main gate, close to where the children’s swings are located, inciting chaos and stampedes as people fled in terror.

A Pakistani faction of the Taliban claimed responsibility for this attack in a city that has been plagued by violence perpetuated by the Taliban and Islamic radicals.

I hear no outrage. I hear no anger.

Why?

The only American candidates for President to respond so far have been Bernie Sanders and John Kasich. If the sympathy and compassion of our leaders for victims of terrorism does not include all victims, this is a serious injustice. The families in Gulshan-e-lqbal park were no different than the travelers in Brussels Airport, the concert goers in Paris, the workers in the World Trade Center, the innocent Palestinians and Jewish victims of Hamas, or any one of the nameless victims murdered every month in Nigeria at the hands of Boko Haram.

Attacks are happening all across the world, day after day—so why does it only seem to garner outrage when it takes place in a country that is “like us?”

This infuriates me. This is a problem.

When I am watching my fellow Americans use their so-called compassion and love for only selected groups, my heart breaks. This behavior frightens me—and I don’t scare easily. It shows me we are truly losing touch with our humanity and giving way to fear.

This frightens me more than the perceived threat of a terrorist attack on American soil. An America that is so filled with fear and close-minded hate, that it doesn’t bat an eye when innocents are slaughtered because those innocents are not American or European. That leaves me with a bitter taste in my throat.

This is not what being an American means. I will not allow the terrorists to force me into becoming like them. My heart will remain open to all the world’s beings.

I remember when I was a child—before I understood the politics of the world and its greed—I was proud to be American. Learning about World War I, World War II and even the The Gulf War, I had a naive faith in the goodness of humanity and felt such pride in being part of a country that fought for the oppressed.

How misguided I was. Yet no matter what ugly truths I learn about the ways of the world and my country or how old I get; how far and wide I travel or what horrors I witness, there is still a little voice inside me that believes in the basic, inherent goodness of humanity. I have to believe.

I’m not sure why that is or how it still has the energy to speak up for this belief, but it’s in there. It remains through every day and every attack. It remains through all the hatred, violence and crimes against humanity.

That voice is what keeps me going on the days I want to turn away from others. That voice is what prays for the victims and the perpetrators alike, because it sees the bigger picture.

And it is with that voice of highest good that I will continue to pray for the victims in Pakistan.

 

Author: Lindsay Carricarte

Editor: Nicole Cameron

Image: YouTube screenshot

 

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