Us

In a comic book world, what happened last night in Aurora, Colorado, would itself prove to be a superhero origin. A tragic crime, during the showing of a movie about a masked crimefighter? Heck, it almost is the Batman origin story, on a larger scale.

But we don’t live in a comic book world. The terror, the grief, the pain in our world is real. Real people, going through a real experience that those of us fortunate enough not have been touched by violence can’t even begin to imagine. In the real world, good doesn’t always rise triumphantly from the ashes of this sort of evil; and even when it does, it’s rarely as direct or obvious a path as it is in the comic books.

Here’s the thing, though. Here, in the real world, even if there’s no good to be found in something like this? We can, at least, avoid making it worse.

We can choose not to politicize it. We can choose not to make it about "us vs. them."

We can choose not to view it as nationality vs. nationality; religion vs. religion; Left vs. Right. Even if it turns out the gunman did see it that way–and we don’t know yet; we might never–it doesn’t mean that we have to. The people who were taken, the people left behind to suffer, aren’t confined to one ethnicity, one religion, one political party.

Some politicians are already politicizing this. Don’t. Don’t do it; don’t let them do it.

This isn’t about "us vs. them." Because today, "us" is everyone.