Commentary

We All Bleed Red

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I am not accustomed to feeling distraught, but listening to the media lately regarding the recent police officer murders in Dallas, TX has me not only distraught, but disgusted.

Why anyone would choose to deliberately murder another human is beyond me. That any human would celebrate the taking of a life is incomprehensible.

Statistically speaking, violent crime in the United States has been on a decline, and that is a good thing. However, the ever growing social media and technology available at our fingertips continuously floods us with information that isn’t always correct and can be misleading.

From 2011 to 2013, 38.5 percent of people arrested for violent crime, murder, manslaughter, rape, robbery and aggravated assault were black. This figure is three times higher than the percent of the population that is black, 13 percent. When accounting for the fact that black males aged 15-34, who account for around 3% of the population, are responsible for the vast majority of these crimes, the figures are mind-boggling.

This brings me to the “black lives matter” (BLM) movement and those who would promote that the color of one’s skin should matter more than another. This exacerbates the problem of race baiting and does nothing to strike at the root of these horrific FBI numbers.

No one can convince me that the color of one’s skin would statistically raise the chances that an individual would harm another. Therefore there must be contributing factors that lead to such moral decay.

Poverty, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, being the subject of abuse or witnessing it at a previous time can all be contributing factors, and are likely the true causes of these statistics, rather than skin color.

It’s a manifestation of the situations people are exposed to in their lives that lead to situations of such horrid despair, while the media fuels the fire. Much to my dismay, bad news sells, and when people read that bad news it makes them angry. In a handful of cases, people lash out and the media makes them famous.

Recently, I caught a glimpse of what was supposed to be a BLM protest. Instead, the police showed up with burgers, hot dogs and music. Instead of protesting, everyone got along and enjoyed each other’s’ company.

The best way to settle differences is to come to the table with solutions, not accusations, not hatred and certainly not violence. Instead of the continuous airing of horror, which is more limited than the press would have you believe, we need to start promoting the positive actions and solutions that help make all lives matter and tackle the issues that harm us all as humans.

I could care less what color your skin is. What matters is the depth of your character. As says the old adage goes, if you are nice to me, I will be nice to you. I think this is how the majority of people feel, and I am not going to let a few bad apples dominate my conversations and actions…we are all in this together and we all bleed red.

Peace out.

About Beth O'Connor

Representative O'Connor represents House District 5 including the towns of Berwick and North Berwick (part). She can be reached at (207) 289-9047.

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