I wept at the horror of the massacre in the two mosques in New Zealand as many of you did. It was a bit different for me in a number of ways, as it caused me to relive my personal horror of October 27 as well as meet my expectation that there would be a massacre in another house of worship. The question was never “if”, only “when”. How does one who lived through the horror respond?
The actions of people who have let the ignorance of the beliefs of their neighbors lead to unfathomable acts of violence will most likely always be. It’s just that we cannot, we must not, let the evil actions of a small number of people outweigh all of the good people that exist on this planet. Some tarnish can always be polished away. Letting the tarnish remain hides the luster and beauty.
The most comforting thing to me throughout the past nearly five months has been the outpouring of love and support from all good people throughout the world – all races, creeds, colors, sexual orientation, and ages. They have uplifted me through their heartfelt letters, prayers, and gifts. They continually remind me of all the good that is in the world.
The H word has struck again. While we are housed in temporary surroundings, we will not let H drive us from our home. I ask you to share my simple words with others, to reach out not only to the injured communities, but to your Islamic neighbors as well. They are in pain, and need your comfort and reassurance that they are not alone. We might not be able to totally rid the world of evil, but we must do our part to overwhelm it with goodness. I fervently pray I don’t have to write this column ever again.