Nous sommes unis avec Paris

BY DAVE MARTIN

A concert hall, soccer stadium, and cafés rank amongst the top tourist and local destinations in any big European city.

On Friday, however, they comprised part of a list of spots hit by terrorists throughout Paris. Madmen armed with guns, explosives, and hate terrorized innocent civilians and looked to impose their own twisted agendas on the rest of a free nation—and, by association, the rest of the free world.

We here at Detour join the rest of the United States and offer our sincerest condolences to the city of Paris, to the victims and their families, and to the French people as they undoubtedly look to heal and rebuild after these traumatic events. Yet even mourning will be difficult as the country struggles to assess its damages and brace itself for whatever shockwaves may follow. All we can do in the meantime is hope and pray for their safety and support.

As I stand here behind my convenience store counter at 3:00 am reading newspapers covering the terror attacks, respective pundits and editorials call for responses ranging from a full-blown invasion of Syria—an Islamic State hotbed—to increased security and closed borders. One commenter even suggested we launch a nuclear strike to fully eliminate the threat.

Let me repeat that.

One commentater even suggested we launch a nuclear strike to fully eliminate the threat.

If this attack shows us anything, it’s that we should respond with kindness and love to our fellow man, not with retaliation and hatred. Though the terrorists responsible for this atrocity should—and will—pay for their crimes, it doesn’t mean we can simply lash out at others because of their beliefs or appearance. No, we should come together as human beings and support each other through the darkness we currently face.

Any and all reasonable military and political responses can wait. Today, we should mourn and heal, and give the lives lost and forever altered the peace and dignity they deserve. Keep the citizens of Paris in your thoughts, and do something in your life to help stem the recent tide of hate. Help an elderly neighbor carry groceries; pay it forward at a coffee shop; or let someone go before you at an intersection. Every little bit of kindness makes a difference, and right now, we need every bit we can get.

Today, we stand with Paris, and we stand united to make a difference.