Asst. Arts & Entertainment Editor
As we watched the ball drop on New Year’s Eve, we made promises to ourselves. We vowed that 2023 was going to be our best year yet. Everyone was looking forward to beginnings, challenges and opportunities. But instead, we were greeted with violence, fear and depression.
“Hogwarts Legacy” has pitted the Harry Potter fandom and transgender activists against each other, and to the point where streamers are being harassed relentlessly. Tyler Nichols, an innocent black man, was savagely beaten by five black officers and died from his injuries. Former President Jimmy Carter entered hospice care at the age of 98. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has been ongoing for a whole year. A twelve-year-old football player died during practice. And the worst of it all, there have been 10 mass shootings in only three days. Many victims of that shooting consisted of children and teenagers.
At a Georgia gas station, nine children were shot. A total of six people were killed in a Mississippi town. In Memphis, Tennessee, 11 people were shot. Near a parade in New Orleans, Louisiana, five people were injured. Then on a expressway in Chicago, Illinois, six people were shot. This is not even half of the reported mass shooting violence over this past weekend. According to the Gun Violence Archive, there have been 10 mass shootings from Feb. 17 through Feb. 19 – the most of any weekend so far this year.
If there is one thing that devastates me the most, it’s the loss of innocent lives. These victims were relatively young with potential futures ahead of them, and those futures were taken away from them by a single deadly bullet.
As so much bad news overflows the news feed, it’s hard to keep track of it all without being emotionally fatigued. Normally, anyone would be horrified and distraught to hear such horrific stories on the news. Yet, all I feel is just emptiness and I become tired of it all. Sadly, that’s how I’m feeling right now.
I’m at that point where I don’t have the capacity to be shocked or surprised by what’s happening in the world. I’m pretty sure that shouldn’t be normal. It’s hard to stay optimistic or positive sometimes, especially after hearing about the latest murder or shooting of the day.
However, take comfort in knowing that there will always be room for compassion in this world. We need empathy and kindness more than ever before. Reach out to someone over the phone, send a note of gratitude to a friend or even help someone cross the street – these are little things that can really make someone’s day better.
We have to find that silver lining somewhere, even when it feels like there really isn’t any in sight. If there was a time to appreciate what you have, now would be most ideal. Things aren’t going to improve overnight, but the least I can do is assure you that this too shall pass. Don’t focus on the past, but on the here and now.