saleIt’s our 14th wedding anniversary today. While it’s a personal milestone, I couldn’t help but feel a heavy heart as we headed out for dinner this evening. “Heavy heart” doesn’t even do justice to how I should feel after hearing the first news coming out of Southern California. It’s nearly daily that we read of mass shootings in the news these days. We aren’t finished mourning one attack before the next comes around.

Fourteen years ago on our wedding day in December 2001, our world had just recently drastically changed for the worse, following the 9/11 attacks. My husband and I headed to Israel immediately after our wedding to live there during the height of the second Intifada.

Our eldest daughter was born on the eve of the Iraq War. She’s nearly 13 now, and for our children’s entire lives, our country has been at war. It’s their norm.

Our second daughter was born a few months before Hurricane Katrina. As we wait for some semblance of good news to come out of the Paris Summit, I can’t help but recognize that all of our children think it’s perfectly normal for natural disasters to regularly occur–tsunamis, hurricanes, massive droughts and fires and snowmaggedons.

And as of late, our kids are becoming accustomed to mass shootings at any random time and in any given place. Try as we might to shelter them, they’re forced to practice school lock downs, and they can read the news in the paper for themselves.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

To be an Orthodox Jew means to believe in a Messianic Age, when our world will one day be a better place. But, sometimes I feel like we throw our hands up and pray for Moshiach to clean up our mess.

Instead, we need the courage and fortitude to tackle big issues because God helps those who help themselves.

As parents and as educators, we need to be talking to our kids about the environment and the Paris Summit. If we’re not all part of the solution, we’re part of the problem.

When it comes to gun violence, we need to be joining the chorus of voices shouting that enough is enough. That a terrorist on a no fly list can still walk into a gun show and buy a gun without even showing an ID makes no sense, no matter your politics. Or that a kid on Chicago’s south side can just as easily access a gun as he can access a piece candy makes no sense.  No other developed country encounters the kind of gun violence we do. We have a national disease on our hands, and the cure is for us to stop accepting it.

It’s time to set aside party politics and start thinking rationally. Because no matter your party, we’re all in trouble here. And as of now, the next 14 years for our world aren’t looking much better.

What you can do:

If you’re angry, if you’re fed up, if you agree there’s more we can do, I’m asking you to share this message to five people right now and ask them to text “ENOUGH” to 644-33 to join the Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America movement.

You can also fill your senators’ voicemails by calling them at 888-997-4866 to demand background checks on all gun purchases #ENOUGH


4 thoughts on “Reflecting on 14 Years

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