On October 1, late Sunday night, 22,000 country fans stood to listen to country singer, Jason Aldean, perform at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada. Not long before Aldean began to sing his song, “When She Says Baby” rounds of shots were fired from the 32nd floor window of the nearby hotel, Mandalay Bay Resort. That night, America faced a tragic attack that resulted in the loss of 58 lives. Technically speaking, the death count is 59, however, I am only counting the number of lives that matter. It is inhumane for someone to take the lives of innocent people. That may sound like common sense to most of you, but with what’s been going on around the world lately I felt the need to clarify that it is most certainly not okay.
We began October by hitting the record of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. Record-breaking or not, when a life is lost unexpectedly the world grows more cold. Everywhere around us lately has been filled with nothing but hate, war, threats, and division. Most fear leaving their houses at all and I’ll admit I was one of them. Never in my life did I think I would experience this much tragedy in such a short amount of years. After hearing about the recent news of the Las Vegas shooting I asked myself, “How sad is it that waking up and hearing about yet another shooting, bombing, threat of war, or police brutality case barely fazes us at all anymore?” Friends around me constantly muttering, “We’re all going to die” so casually at the news of another terrorist attack. These acts are inhumane; we shouldn’t be surrendering ourselves to terrorists with fear. That’s exactly what they want. To live in fear is not a life worth living. I know it’s easier said than done, but all it takes is one person to make a chain reaction. Before you know it, you’ll have an army of fearless beings by your side. We are stronger than those who throw stones. We are armed with powerful forces of love that spread like wildfire. We can’t let them tear us down, we can’t let them win; for to be feared is the most powerful weapon anyone can attain.
Terrorist attacks feel so common nowadays it’s hard not to be afraid of the outside world. So I’ve collected a few statistics that make you think twice about how much credit we give terrorists, according to globalresearch.org:
- You are 19,000 times more likely to die in a car accident than from a terrorist attack.
- You are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack.
- You are 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack.
- Obesity is 5,882 to 23,528 times more likely to kill you than a terrorist.
Feel a little better? I know, me neither. Even with all those statistics to back up just how little power terrorists have, we can’t help but crawl under our covers and pray God spares us another day. So how can we be fearless after all these attacks? Here are a few guidelines I felt should be staples in our fearless lifestyle:
Make love, not war.
Don’t fight fire with fire. Becoming enraged and being just as violent is only stooping to their level. If we want change, we need to be the change. Of course, this does not mean to not take any action. Your response can be just as powerful but mean so much more. Remember that actions speak louder than words. For example, when a child is misbehaving you do not match their behavior. You speak to them with a message so powerful they won’t dare throw back any punches.
When in doubt, seek help.
We are powerful soldiers standing together as one nation, but that doesn’t mean we’re made of stone. Even the toughest soldiers breakdown sometimes. We have feelings; it’s what makes us human. It’s okay to need help when you’re feeling down. In these trying times, everyone is at their most vulnerable. No one said you have to deal with it alone. Whether it be professional help or a close family/friend you feel safe talking to, don’t hesitate to ask for help. Being fearless around the clock isn’t easy. We all fall down sometimes. It’s just crucial you get back up.
Love thy neighbor: be the shoulder.
When one part of our nation suffers, we all suffer. Lend a helping hand if you are capable of doing so. Even if you’re states away, there’s always something you can do. If you don’t have money or supplies to donate, just do whatever you can to help. Whether it be researching what the affected area is in need of and contacting whoever you know that can be of service or being a shoulder to lean on for those who need emotional support. There are many ways to get involved and show your ‘neighbors’ that you are always here for them.
Alert the media!
Terrorism has become an ongoing trending topic for a couple years now. Our instincts drive us to where we know our voices can be touched by millions; social media. It’s important to be vocal about these issues, ranting may come easy and natural especially when fueled by a fire. Spread the word and make known that you are not afraid. They are watching our reactions, all it takes it one sign of defeat to satisfy them. Use the media as a weapon of words so strong it will destroy their expectations of how weak they thought we were.
Motivation and power can come from different entities in life; my most influential entity is music. A song that resonates with me when I hear about these kinds of tragedies is “Death And All His Friends” by the band Coldplay. Have you ever listened to a song that gave such a powerful message that you instantly connected with? When I’m feeling scared, depressed, and hopeless from all the terror attacks, I listen to this song. “We’re aware of all the bad stuff in life, you know – i.e. Death and all his friends – but that doesn’t mean you should ever give in to it, you know? So we all sing that bit together really loudly, as kind of a message to ourselves: never giving up and never focusing on the bad stuff too much,” explains Chris Martin, lead singer. To me this song is hope. It reminds me to be fearless and live my life to the absolute fullest. I recommend you to find the entity that motivates you and use it towards situations like this past weekend.
Don’t be afraid, you are not alone. Together we stand strong for our fallen members in Las Vegas, Sandy Hook, Pulse Nightclub, and every other attack in our nation. No freedom without love, we are a forced to be reckoned with. You can be fearless; don’t give up on your life. That is the last thing the people who lost their lives would want. There is still good in humanity, don’t lose faith. Don’t give up on each other; don’t give up on humanity, because it’s still there. We’re all here for one another, to help lift each other up in our darkest hours.
(Featured photo credit: KRBE)
If you want to lend a helping hand to the victims and families affected by the Las Vegas shooting, here are some of the charities/organizations you can donate to: