I don’t purport to be a political expert. In fact, I intentionally keep from engaging in political discussions with peers because I’ve seen far too many mere political discussions turn into heated arguments laden with cutting insults and raised voices. More so, I feel like I’m simply not nearly qualified nor informed enough to accurately voice and support my opinions.
Of course I try to keep myself pretty well informed on most current events, but I know that I – like many others in the modern era – generally fall short. There’s only so far I can get through a CNN or BBC article before I get bored or distracted by a flashy headline for a listicle or social media (thanks, shortened attention span).
Lately, it’s been increasingly difficult to be under-informed. Don’t get me wrong – knowing and understanding what is happening in the world is great, but it becomes not-so-great when it happens under distressing circumstances.
My mom recently said to me, “I was thinking about everything that’s been going on in the world lately, and I had a thought: what will the world look like for you and your children? Your children’s children?”
I’m an eternal optimist and I will never waver in my belief of compassion and love for the human race and hope for the future, but I will be frank: I’m scared.
I’m scared that we’re going to go to war.
I’m scared that history is repeating itself.
Most importantly, I’m scared that we’re slowly entering into a new reality, where fear is the norm, violence is the answer, bloodshed is common, and hope is lost for humanity.
I refuse to accept that this is the future that we’re heading towards because I know that we are capable of so much more, but still I worry.
I could get on my soapbox and talk about my opinions on violence and war, but instead I’ll say this – I believe in love.
Call me the product of a “soft” generation that has been coddled and told over and over again that we’re “special” and “loved” not only by our parents and peers but also by self-righteous bloggers writing about body acceptance and equal rights for all (Ah yes, irony), but I believe in love.
I believe in the power of loving your neighbor and loving your brother.
I believe that love sits at the very core of humanity. We’re all capable of it, we all have the ability to love.
And while admittedly (in the words uttered during a recent conversation), “hugging a terrorist isn’t going to make them throw their weapons down and forget their hatred,” I believe in it nonetheless.
At the risk of sounding cliche, I think Anne Frank put it best:
“It’s really a wonder that I haven’t dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart.“
So as the world keeps brimming with the rumble of intermittent anger and violence, I choose to move forward with love.
Even if that makes me a cliche.