Violence in JoCo?

A reaction to the Jewish Community Center shootings

I am sitting here in shock.

The hail is pounding on my roof and CNN is struggling to be heard over the ruckus.

I am in shock that three members of our community were killed today by a possible nazi sympathizer at the Jewish Community Center and Village Shalom Assistant Living Center.

Our community, Johnson County, land of moderate thinkers and accepting people. At a community center, that while it bears the name of only one religion, is truly home to all members of our area. A community center a mere 5.7 miles from our high school.

There has been a rash of violence on our news recently. We’ve seen the bloodied faces of protestors in Ukraine and Venezuela. We’ve heard of the high school knife attacks last week in Pennsylvania. We’re being reminded of the one year anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombings. But, this is different. It is local. It is relatable.

Beyond being relatable to most suburbanites in our area, the tragedy strikes us from a religious perspective as well. Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week for Christians around the world. It is also the eve of one of the most sacred Jewish holidays, Passover. This is a time of year where we should all be respectful, and supportive, of each other’s religious observations.

Instead the news reminds us of how far we have to go. It is ludicrous that in 2014 a possible hate crime has been waged on those of the Jewish faith. As details begin to emerge and stories of the victims told, we must remember to stand together as one community. A community not divided by religion, race, gender, and any other societal barrier built up to separate.