Someone said to me recently, “You travel all over the place by yourself. You don’t seem to worry about being out in this unsafe world.” It was something to that effect. Since he was an elderly gentleman, I refrained from going ballistic (my usual reaction). So, my response went something like this, “The world has always been crazy. Read your history books!” How many times have you heard something about how unsafe the world is – how crazy it is “out there”?
I am tired. Tired of the media portraying the world as “dangerous”. Tired of people being depicted as mean or hateful. The world is no more dangerous today than it was 100 years ago or 1000 years ago. Pick your century or era – there were wars, fights, people not getting along. Folks arguing over who should be in power. People fighting for a piece of land. Citizens fighting over religion, marriage, the state of the economy. The difference now is that we have 24/7 access. We have 24 hour news channels. We have the internet. We have social media. And, apparently, good news doesn’t sell. So, we hear all the bad stuff. It sells. We eat it up. It’s all rather sad, I think. Is this how we want our children to grow up – to be afraid of the world?
My reaction to all this is this: Go travel the world! It’s not unsafe. It’s not dangerous. Sure, there are places that are dangerous or less safe than others. But even here at home (I live in Cincinnati), there are places I wouldn’t go as it wouldn’t be smart for a single gal to go there on her own. So, there are “unsafe” spots everywhere. I’ve traveled to a handful of places on my own without incident. And I know other well-traveled single folks who have been so many places without encountering “danger”. You pack your common sense and you get out there! You may as well stay locked up in your home and not go anywhere if you’re afraid. This world is a beautiful place. There is so much to see and do – so much to experience. There really isn’t anything to be scared of. So why are so many people afraid?
And the people? Well, the people are wonderful. They’re kind. They’re warm. They’re generous. I’ve experienced the kindness of complete strangers. Strangers who offered help when I needed it. Strangers who have far less than I who were willing to share their food or drink with me. Strangers who offered a smile when I needed it. Strangers who became friends. People aren’t mean or hateful or “out to get us Americans”. People are human beings. And, as such, they have empathy for other human beings. They are welcoming and kind. They too know how it feels when they are treated with compassion and consideration and when they are not. They have heart – just like you and me.
I know I won’t change everyone’s mind. But, it is my hope that I will at least get you thinking. Stop listening to the media and all the “bad stuff”. Find some good news stories. They’re out there. Really, there are more good things going on in the world than bad. The good stuff just isn’t “sexy”. It doesn’t sell.
Above all, just believe in the goodness of people and the world we live in. The world is not a scary place. It’s a magical and amazing place filled with kindhearted and loving human beings. We’re so lucky to live in such a world!