I have this saying, most days, when I’m leaving the office: Make it home safe. It is my daily farewell ritual to whomever is left in the office to make it back to your loved ones in the condition that you left them that morning.
In a span of 13 hours, yesterday, 29 people were executed in two separate tragedies. They didn’t make it home.
It started in the afternoon, when 20 people were gunned down while shopping at an El Paso, Texas Walmart. Thirteen hours later, and roughly 1,600 miles away, nine more people were gunned down at a Dayton, Ohio bar.
Workplaces in El Paso and Dayton won’t look the same tomorrow. Someone’s favorite co-worker won’t be there because they were killed in the middle of a grocery store or bar.
The violent events of El Paso and Dayton were terrorist attacks. Not the nearly imaginable, stereotypical attacks, however, where a Muslim has a bomb strapped to their chest. No, those almost never happen in America.
These two recent terrorist attacks were more like the one at a northern California food festival last weekend. Or, remember the one at the South Carolina church, when the members were praying? Or the one at the Southern California bar last November. Or the one at a Pittsburgh synagogue last October. Or the one at a Santa Fe high school before that. And the one at a Florida high school before that! But not like that one at the elementary school, because some say that was a conspiracy theory.
Forgive my facetiousness, but the routine images of ordinary people running for their lives in terror, wounded bystanders performing CPR on strangers, and lifeless bodies lying in parking lots have driven me to the brink of insanity.
I don’t have the answers, political or otherwise, to solve this epidemic. I just want people to make it home.
I want the sons and daughters, dropped off by their parents at school, to make it home. I want the grandmother at bible study to make it home. I want a father, working to keep the lights on for his family, to make it home because that is the way it should be.
I want you to make it home.