I think when terrorism and other terrible tragedies happen, fear takes hold of people.
In recent history we have seen an attempted coup staged in Turkey. In France an armed man drove a truck through a crowd, killing 84 people. There have been numerous mass shootings in America, including the Orlando attack which cost the lives of 49 LGBTI people. In Iraq bomb threats reign and LGBTI people are being tortured and killed by ISIS members. We are also learning more about a recent shooting in Munich, Germany. With all of this happening right now I wanted to address everyone and tell you, fear will not solve the issues we face.
It’s natural to fell scared under these circumstances, but fear often entices people to think, vote and act in a more extreme and irrational manner. We have to fight our own fear and try to show strength in dark times. And rationality. Togetherness and courage is important in the face of extremism.
One organisation leading the first queer movement in Iraq, despite persecution, is IraQueer. The human rights organisation was started by young activists and has gone on to support countless LGBTI people in Iraq and Kurdistan regions. I’m not saying everyone should go out and start an entire movement, what I am saying is more good people should speak up against extremism.
It is important to make efforts to be a good and positive person in the face of extremism. The strongest and most effective activism is continuing. Keep living and partake in activities that achieve a level of good. Go on that holiday, have a great time, laugh with friends, write, paint, create, smile at strangers, walk in nature and appreciate wildlife. Be the light in the dark.
You cannot let recent events scare you into not living. There is warfare, killing, negative media and angry people everywhere! Don’t allow extremism to dictate your choices. You will miss the great things in life if you do. All this evil will still be there whether you stay indoors or not! Life is a chance! A chance to make positivity happen! Look up from your phone, wipe away your tears and take that chance!
People are dying and it’s awful, but if you start spreading hate out of fear, all those deaths are in vain. By going out there, having fun and being unapologetically you, you automatically become stronger than the evil in this world.
You can make a real difference if you support good people, ethical organisations and genuine leaders. Continue life in peace. Show evil you will be strong, courageous and LIVE! Don’t be scared, Go outside. If not for yourself then for all those around the world who passed prematurely this year, live for them.
What are your thoughts on fear? How can YOU combat terror and extremism in a peaceful way?