Our nation is currently experiencing grief and “standing together” during a time of national tragedy, yet we are also divided in many ways.
Last week was a horrible week for our country. Just as we were starting to come out of the fog and isolation caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic, a new tragedy occurred.
An unfortunate incident took place near Minneapolis, Minnesota which resulted in the death of resident George Floyd.
Floyd, a black man, sadly died while in the custody of law enforcement officers and now our nation is in a state of distress, uproar, and divide.
This is an incredibly sad situation.
Proceeding With Caution and Respect
I knew I wanted to be cautious with my words as I share my heart, and here’s why.
Last night I opened my Instagram app and saw a post by one of my favorite Instagram accounts.
It was a post written in memory of George Floyd, but for me, it took a horribly wrong turn.
This account, run by a mother-daughter team, essentially blamed the whole situation on one “group” of individuals and they wrote that it was up to that “group” to “fix” it.
If anyone responded or questioned their beliefs, there was a simple repeated copy and paste response each time.
I have been following their account and sharing their thoughtful sentiments for a long time and was very surprised by their post.
It was shocking and it was disappointing.
I immediately wondered if the daughter had written the post as it seemed so out of character (and she hadn’t been part of the team for that long), but then I realized it didn’t matter.
The damage was done.
Everyone is entitled to their opinions but pointing fingers will not “fix” anything.
It was a good lesson for me, however, as an example of “what not to do”.
Writing about National Tragedies is not usually my forte.
I am normally an inspirational and “happy” writer, so I wouldn’t say this is my strong suit. However, maybe that’s why I felt the need to write this.
Being a strong writer sometimes calls for tackling things that make one feel uncomfortable and challenged.
In fact, writer/entrepreneur James Altucher says when his writing is uncomfortable, he knows it’s time to publish it. (I thought that was interesting).
I am a proud and caring American. I hate that there is great suffering, sadness, and divide in our country right now. So here I am in the uncomfortable zone. (And I’m embracing it).
Standing Together During Tragedy is crucial!
Ignorance isn’t bliss and silence isn’t golden…
Ignorance isn’t bliss and silence isn’t golden.
With that in mind, I will just say this:
- The treatment of George Floyd was not okay.
- The peaceful protests that turned into riots are not okay.
- The California Peace Officers Memorial being destroyed is not okay.
- Police Chiefs giving daily reports on how many officers have been injured is not okay.
- Stories of looting, injuries, and curfews for public safety are endless and not okay.
- None of this is okay. None of it.
Standing Together During Tragedy.
I’m not an expert at Coping with National Tragedies, but I’d like to offer a few suggestions:
- Try to be careful and thoughtful when responding to the thoughts and feelings of others. Emotions are high.
- If you know someone whose current “views” seem to be different than yours and you feel you can have an open and honest conversation with them, give it a try. You may gain understanding and a new perspective.
- Be open-minded if you can.
- Be kind.
- And if you pray… pray for peace and understanding. Because we really need it right now.
Standing Together During Tragedy | Resources:
Coping Resources if you are struggling:
Here are a few web resources you may find helpful if you are struggling:
Coping with Public Tragedies via Vitas Healthcare
Coping with Disaster via Mental Health America
A National Tragedy: Helping Children Cope via National Association of School Psychologists
Resources if you wish to “take action”:
If you are a person who wants to take action, you will love this link.
4 Ways to Respond to Tragedy With Action and Hope via DoSomething.org is a great piece.
I won’t give away the whole “story” but I will tell you that I love #4.
“Remember and honor those who lost their lives”. (Please read the suggestion on how to best honor, George):
George Floyd’s girlfriend has called for peace:
“Waking up this morning to see Minneapolis on fire would be something that would devastate Floyd. He loved the city. He came here [from Houston] and stayed here for the people and the opportunities. … Floyd was a gentle giant. He was about love and about peace,” Ross said, adding that while she understands the frustration, “I want people to protest in a peaceful way.”Courtney Ross – George Floyd’s Girlfriend
Source: Newsweek Magazine
Let’s Support Each Other.
It’s tough out there right now.
Remember you are entitled to your feelings, whatever they are. Allow yourself to feel and connect with others to help yourself (and them) through this challenging time.
Take care and be safe!
With much respect and support,
- If you have comments or suggestions for this post, I’d love to hear from you. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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