KATIE ZERR: We need reminders of good in the world

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One only has to read a newspaper or watch any news program on television to be bombarded with the kind of evil of which mankind is capable.

As we watch one human being decapitating another to make a point, or injured children being carried on stretchers from the remains of a school leveled by a rocket attack, or hear of children being harmed by an adult to satisfy sexual desires, we begin to wonder what kind of a world it is in which we live.

We watch protesters throw rocks, burn buildings and shoot at police in Ferguson, Mo., and wonder about the cause of such violence. The shooting of Michael Brown is the straw that broke the camel’s back. It is not something that just came to light with his death.

Those who truly believe the only way to bring attention to the conditions under which they live is through national awareness must feel frustrated that their voices could be drowned out by the lawlessness of nightly looting and burning.

We see video of thugs running from a burning business with chrome tire rims hoisted above their heads. We don’t see the event and the years of frustration that brought all of this to a head.

We read about an investigation into the beating and shooting of a man in Mississippi that may have been prompted by a visit from his mixed-raced grandchildren. He had reported a cross burning in his front yard days before the incident.

In New York police arrested a man on charges he called a Sikh man a terrorist and mowed him down with his pickup truck.

The two exchanged words because the car door was blocking the street. The man called the other a terrorist before hitting him with his truck dragging him several feet before fleeing.

A 3-year-old girl died after she was riding in a car with her father who got into a shootout with police. Earlier, police say the man shot and critically wounded two people. The victims are believed to be the girl’s maternal grandfather and great-grandmother.

We watch the carnage left behind as wealth and power continues to be the ultimate goal in politics and business in our country. No matter the harm to innocents, the need to be right and to be in the national limelight overrides the aftermath. These people call themselves leaders. That is not leadership.

Even the strongest of souls must feel overwhelmed at the sadness and violence that has occurred in our lifetimes. That list is too long to begin in such a small space.

When all of this threatens to stamp out any optimism in our world, the media throws a tidbit or two our way to fan the dying embers of optimism into flames again.

Just recently a story about two airport mechanics helping a quadruple amputee veteran fix his prosthetic leg and make his flight made us smile and have faith that there are good people left in the world.

A story about a New York woman who jumped into a canal to save two children strapped into a stroller that had rolled down a 10-foot embankment into the water, was another.

The video showing drivers rushing to save a grandmother and a child from a burning vehicle along a Biloxi, Miss., freeway after her vehicle hit a semi trailer, shows us that there are people who put their safety aside to help others.

Despite the danger it poses, doctors and health experts from around the globe are traveling to Africa to try to stem an Ebola outbreak.

They are not friends or relatives, but strangers who see a danger and yet know that their knowledge and skill could save lives in a country to which they have no connection.

We watched as people rushed to replace a truckload of supplies stolen before it began the journey to help victims of a natural disaster, donating thousands of more items than what was stored in the truck.

Basically humans are kind and giving and forgiving. We need to have reminders of that amidst all of the headline-grabbing evil that lurks in our world.

As we are bombarded with news of the worst of the worst, we need to strive to bring out the best in our neighbors and ourselves.

But most of all, we should strive to not be a part of or play a role through words and actions in bringing out the worst in mankind.

There is far too much of that already in our lives.

 

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