An entire generation of Americans grew up watching and learning from “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood.” He was a comforting figure noted for always wearing a cardigan sweater and teaching lessons about how to get along with others in the neighborhood. With his gentle manner and soft words there was nothing preachy about Mr. Rogers. He was the man you wished lived next door to your house – the one you could talk to when you had a fight with your best friend or didn’t understand why your parents wouldn’t let you do something. For years nobody knew that Mr. Rogers was, in fact, an ordained Presbyterian minister.
He never talked down to children and he was willing to tackle some of the difficult topics that everyone, including children, have to face in the world. In the wake of the terrible event that occurred in Las Vegas, his words are more important than ever – not just for our children, but for ourselves when we face the evil that exists around us.
Look for the people who are helping. There were numerous accounts of just such people yesterday. There was the young man, only one of many, who was shot trying to help people during the shooting, as reported by The Washington Post. There were numerous reports of people using their own bodies to shield others from the bullets. Some of these heroes paid the ultimate price for their courage.
The lines of people who waited for hours to donate blood – until the hospital finally told them they had more than they needed.
There were people who brought food to the hospitals, the grief counselors who volunteered to work at Mandalay Bay where the tragedy occurred. There were the millions of Americans who opened their hearts and their pocketbooks to provide more than $1M to help the victims.
Just as we saw during Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria – Americans reach out to help other Americans, regardless of race, religion, or national origin, when disaster strikes. Because that’s what Americans do. We don’t need to be told to do it by government leaders, we act to help our neighbors and total strangers.
Remind your children and yourselves that no matter how many bad people there are in the world, not matter how many tragedies occur, there will always be more people willing to help. More people who will put aside their own needs for others. That’s not such a bad world to live in after all.