Every single time something unfortunate happens, social media gets inundated with messages of prayer becoming viral hashtags #prayforParis #prayforOrlando #prayforPR #prayforVegas #prayforBrussels and so on. While I firmly believe in the power of prayer and in the power of a world coming together in peace and unity, I can’t help but wonder why we keep praying and hoping our troubles away instead of taking action about them.
When 26 children and adults died in the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012, we prayed for them. What happened was so heartbreaking that some of us (it turns out the very naive of us) actually believed there will be some forward movement in terms of gun control. Years later, nothing happened.
In 2016 when a gunman opened fire in a night club in Orlando killing 49 people and injuring dozens more, we prayed again. We changed our Facebook statuses and profile photos, we reminded people around us of how much we love them and once again we naively thought a chance might come in terms of gun control. Yet nothing happened.
Fast forward to 2017, just a couple of days ago, a peaceful Route 91 Harvest country music festival in Las Vegas turns into a massacre when a gunman decides to open fire killing 59 people and injuring over 500. He shot so many bullets that the SWAT team found the shooter because the smoke alarm went off in the room he was using as his post. 3,309 rooms at the Mandalay Bay and they were able to find him because of the amount of smoke his guns released. A war zone in a hotel room. And social media got flooded once again with messages of prayer. Every single person who supported the NRA, every senator and congressman who believes in the right of every citizen to not only bear arms, but also bear assault gun capable of killing dozens of people in minutes, tweeted their heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims. Furthermore they’re planning on voting on a bill that will ease gun control and make it even easier to get access to weapons.
Maybe it’s time to stop talking about all these thoughts and prayers and actually take action. I don’t know all the resources out there about taking action, but this is definitely a good place to start – Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence.