To Be Free from Religious Assassination

There was a mass shooting on a synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA not too long ago. I was silent.

There was a mass shooting on a black church in Charleston, SC. I was also then silent.

There was just a mass shooting on a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. Today you will hear from me.

These are just three of who knows how many, since many of these sort of events do not always make national headlines. But of these three that did—the most recent only a few days ago—there is a common thread: a group of people were slaughtered for being different.

Sounds primitive and archaic, but it still happens. And it needs to stop!

Gun control and gun rights debates aside, what we have here is self-righteous pride and fear of others swelling up in individuals, causing them to lash out onto the unsuspecting. It’s cowardice and it’s unforgivable.

With the most recent mass shooting, the shooter praised President Trump’s immigration paranoia, and idolized the Donald’s racial pride, though our leader denies he continuously feeds this “evangelical” white supremacy.

As central Ohio’s chapter president of the Americans United for Separation of Church and State, I speak out against hating others over our differences. We must accept all people within our country, natives and immigrants, including their customs.

Americans United stands for religious freedom of all people, all creeds, all religions—and even for those without religion, as I’m not a religious person myself. But this beyond angers me that someone who has a puffed-up view of their own race, gender, or religion would attack those of a difference race, gender, or religion (in this country or in a foreign one).

All we humans are doing is trying to find our way in this world, making ends meet, and helping those that we meet. The world indeed is small, in the grand picture of uncountable solar systems, and we need to look out for each other.

We’ve had a shooting too many, even though it’s halfway around the globe, because of white supremacy and Christian nationalism. We need to see not what is different about the other, but what is similar. And may we become a more gentle, humane people.