This I Believe

Ben - Plano, Texas
Entered on November 18, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: setbacks

In our lives, bad things happen: it’s unavoidable. Some people have more fortunate lives than others, but those whose lives are unfortunate are, obviously, worse off. People deal with these sorts of events in different ways: some are positive, some are negative, and the line that separates the two is not always clear.

Unfortunate events, I feel, should be dealt with calmly and, for want of a better word, professionally, unless the situation prevents it entirely. Disasters like 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina are two excellent polar examples.

After the September 11th hijackings, New Yorkers and Americans bonded together, mourning the loss but refusing to give in to the terrorists who had tried to break the country apart. Instead, we were unified; our towers had been knocked down but we had stood up.

After Hurricane Katrina, however, the residents of New Orleans stole and murdered like 16th-century pirates rather than 21st-century civilians in the wealthiest nation on Earth. Rather than help the needy, political parties instead took this as an opportunity to stand aside and criticize each other’s efforts.

Some people find solace in themselves, some in their families and friends, and some in God; a number even find it in the shaky foundation of earthly things. But when we stand united with God and men: that’s how unfortunate events are truly overcome.