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How we can help Paris, France in their time of need

I am sickened to say that there has been another terrorist attack. Although it may not be close to us, and many of us are not directly involved in it, it is still heartbreaking.

Sometimes, it’s easy to think things like this can’t happen. But they can, and they do.

Just 14 years ago, Americans watched with horror as the twin towers came crashing down. Due to this devastating terrorist attack, people lost husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, friends and family members. I speak on behalf of many Americans when I say I wouldn’t wish this kind of tragedy on anyone. No one should have to lose someone they love in such a violent way.

But it happened again. And the results are just as devastating.

Only 21 hours ago, Paris, France, was a victim of a horrible terrorist attack. Once again  people lost husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, friends and family members. Innocent people lost their lives. Like America 14 years ago, the whole country is devastated.

I’m not quite sure how I feel about all of this. On many levels, I am so sad. I’m sad that things like this happen. I’m confused because I don’t know why things like this  happen. I am mad because I do not think terrorist attacks are acceptable at all. But I know one thing for sure. I’m doing my best not to feel hateful. In situations like this, it is easy to feel hatred. I understand first hand. My first reaction was pure bitterness and disgust towards these terrorists who think it is alright to take innocent lives.

Then it occurred to me, these attacks happened due to hateful people. The terrorists who attacked Paris yesterday, were consumed with their hate. This does not justify what they did. Not at all. However, it should be a lesson to everyone else.

If we allow ourselves to be consumed with hatred like these terrorists, then nothing is ever going to change. Wanting justice is appropriate. However, hatred only leads to one thing, and that is more destruction.

As teenagers, its hard to think of ways we can help Paris, or any other victims of terrorism for that matter. However,what Paris needs most now is love and support.  Paris lost 129 sons and daughters, and families are facing life without their loved ones.

Just like 9/11, the terrorist attacks on Paris should not be forgotten. The pain that people are facing will not just go away with time. When you hear about tragedies like this, I encourage you to try to be bigger than hatred, because hatred is usually the cause of these unnecessary tragedies. Instead, be the bigger person, and send your love, prayers and support to the victims.

We may not be able to directly help Paris , but showing love to the victims of a hate crime can make all the difference. That’s how we can help, by overcoming hatred.