But, the terrorists win when we stop meeting together, when we stop celebrating our triumphs, and when we focus on their message – and forget our own.
The Boston marathon bombing overshadowed a remarkable triumph from the parents of Newtown as they came out in public to speak their life lessons. They wanted to help prevent their tragedy from happening to any other parents, and to make a difference by sharing their experience.
And that’s exactly what they did.
One of the parents, David Wheeler, who spent over 20 years in film and television acting while living in New York City, lost his son, Benjamin in the shootings. When he appeared on “60 Minutes” with the other parents, he spoke as eloquently as if he were a great leader with a staff of brilliant writers. He asked American parents to, “…literally find a mirror in your house and look in it and look in your eyes and say, ‘This will never happen to me. This will never happen in my school. This will never happen in my community,’ and see if you actually believe that. And if there is a shadow, the slightest shadow of doubt about what you said, think about what you can do to change that — in your house, in your community, in your school, in your country — because we have an obligation to our children to do this for them. It’s going to happen again… And every time it’s somebody else’s school, it’s somebody else’s town, it’s somebody else’s community, until one day you wake up and it’s not.”
President Obama then asked David’s wife, Francine, who’s a music teacher and performer, to take the president’s place for the weekly radio address to the nation. And what were the results?
It made people accountable. At least they stopped the filibuster and made the senate take a vote. But it’s not the end. When people are willing to speak their message and take a stand, change is possible.
When events like the Boston bombing happen, it’s because evil people are willing to do something horrific to draw attention to their message. But don’t let them succeed. Don’t lose focus on the positive messages that exist, and what we can do to fight back.
Take the time to find your own message, and speak it from the heart. You can make a difference – but only if you make the choice to do it.
This blog post was written by Judy Carter. She generously gave us at MoMondays permission to reprint here. You can thank Judy by taking the time to find your own message, and speak it from the heart.
Judy Carter speaks on the power of humor & personal stories as a leadership tool. She is the author of The Comedy Bible (Simon & Schuster) and her latest book, The Message of You, (St. Martin’s Press). For more about Judy, visit http://blog.comedyworkshops.com/.