Friday evening, the world paused in shock as reports of the barbaric and deplorable attacks in Paris flooded the media. 129 people lost their lives that night, evoking outrage and sympathy worldwide as people banded together and expressed their support of France.
The act of war by ISIS consisted of a series of coordinated attacks that led to a loss of life not seen in France since the second World War.
The nature of these attacks left individuals stunned. Bombs went off near sports stadiums and in cafes. People were gunned down at restaurants and in the theatre. These were venues the average Parisian visited daily in a country renown for its tourism.
These terrorists did not attack religious buildings or political sites. They did not target a specific group of people. The only similar factor between the victims was they were simply human.
It is no wonder the U.S. leapt to support the citizens of Paris. It is impossible not to see ourselves in this horrific assault. We live lives nearly identical to the victims. We saw their pain and recognized it easily could have been us. We harbor the fear we may be next.
France had been fighting ISIS with airstrikes since September 2014. The American-led intervention in Iraq began in June 2014. The fight against ISIS has united many countries, and when one of our allies is attacked, make no mistake, we will be there to aid them.
Terrorism is running rampant across the globe as radical groups attempt to solidify their political aims. They attack helpless victims of every race, religion and gender. While it has always had a presence in society, there has undoubtedly been a frightening increase in attacks over the last several decades.
This year alone, the world has been bombarded with ruthless attacks from extremists. In April, 147 people were slaughtered at Garissa University in Kenya. 224 passengers aboard Metrojet Flight 9268 lost their lives, for which ISIL militants claim credit. Friday evening also saw the death of 43 people, due to two suicide bombers in Beirut, Lebanon. Unfortunately, these are only the tip of an overwhelming iceberg of attacks by terrorist groups.
We have become numb to the immense number of deaths that occur every day due to the acts of twisted men and women who find it easier to shout demands while cowering behind a gun than peacefully work toward authentic change.
The heartbreaking events Friday evening in Paris united the world in assisting the hurting country and we can proudly say Paris, while wounded, is not broken. However, it is imperative the same fury and disgust evoked by those attacks carry over to other atrocities across the globe.
The loss of life anywhere should evoke indignation worldwide. We are all human, we all bleed the same. The moment the world decides to no longer ignore the spilling of innocent blood is the moment real change begins to occur. Friday, people across the globe turned their eyes toward France. Hopefully, those eyes will continue to scour the world for opportunities to eliminate cruelty, rather than once again remaining closed to those in need.