COMMENT: The attack in Nice: An open letter to 7.1 billion people

by

We are constantly being told to ‘live to the fullest’ because ‘life is short.’

We hear these inspirational quotes all the time, occasionally even posting some on our social media profiles, but do we actually take the messages to heart?

What do you mean life is short? I’m invincible. Bad things never happen in my neighbourhood.

I woke up on Friday morning to discover that another tragedy had occurred at the hands of a terrorist organisation, and it dawned on me: life actually is short.

A man drove a truck through crowds of people on the promenade in Nice on Thursday night, amid a firework display and celebration, before opening fire and killing over 80 innocent people.

As a writer, I usually find myself penning articles about the Kardashians, or the latest runway trends, but I write this now, simply as a pissed off citizen of the World. 

There was a time when wars were fought in trenches and on battle fields, by armies who were honouring their country and their people.

Now, in 2016, we see cowards, who are taking these wars to the streets of major cities. It is no longer about territory and power, it is about instilling fear.

The attack carried out on Thursday only proved that our fears have gone beyond the realm of explosives and firearms.

It is an odd feeling, walking to work on an unusually warm summer’s morning in Dublin, knowing that so many people lost their lives that night, simply walking down a street.

Does this mean all vehicles are now a potential threat? What’s next? Skateboards? Bikes?

France is one of the most beautiful nations in the world, but it has been scorned time and time again at the hands of individuals who are ripe with ignorance and hate.

This is not just a message for the people of France, and the devastation they have faced over the past 18 months. It is a message for America, Turkey, Iraq, Belgium, Syria, Afghanistan, and to all the nations in this world who have been affected by mindless terrorism.

I do not want to grow up in a world where the concept of exploration and travel frightens me, purely because of unwarranted attacks on the blameless. I want to be able to visit beautiful countries, without the worry that I may be gunned down, blown up or attacked in any way, for absolutely no reason but bad timing.

While it is near impossible to eradicate evil from our ever-changing world, we must try not fear it. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. We must listen to those over-used John Lennon and Marilyn Monroe quotes, and live our lives to the fullest.

We cannot allow fear to cripple our happiness.

Through this happiness, the evil will lose. They won’t break us. They can’t.

To those of you who fight against terrorism, whether you are a member of the armed forces, a politician or just a protestor hoping for a better world for our children, I thank you.

We must try to tackle these monsters, and fight for world that is not riddled in fear and hatred.

I know it sounds cliché, but the message is real. Hug your loved ones, have that extra doughnut, swim in the ocean, travel the world and enjoy every single second of this life.

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