At times it seems we’ve gone completely mad. At each others throats for differences in opinion, opposite political views, or a heated racial backed debates. In a time where things have become so divided, it is puzzling why tragedy is the one thing that seems to bring us together. It is tragedy that shows the unbending olive branch we extend to our neighbors in a time of need, tragedy that allows people to part their view of everything and pick someone up when they are down, and ultimately tragedy that shows us how much better off we are when we are working together as a human race. The golden rule has long since been a thing we rustle out of our mouths to our children, without a moments thought of how it could effect our own lives. Could we attempt to cope with someones views by just accepting them as different and moving on? Could a political stance actually be debated on by what is really better for us as a whole, without special interests intervening, and could we once and for all wake up out of a million year slumber and notice that color, gender, age or race, should never be a divider of anyone or anything. Of course these ideals unfortunately may be pipe dreams for now, but the day we can part our differences and stand together, tragedy will cease.
I have never counted tragedy as just the disgusting insanity of a deranged soul discounting the lives of innocent people and acting out. Tragedy comes from not only these unfortunate moments, but also those in a school yard where a child is bullied and loses his confidence, where someone is discriminated against because of the color of their skin, where a political view alienates friends and families, where peoples ego’s have interrupted apologies. Thankfully through these difficulties there is always a hero. The one who stands up, the one who leads, the one who rallies the people around him or her to attempt to stop the “tragedies” in their place. This is where being stronger together begins for me.
I have written a song. Put words to melodies in hopes that these word to those melodies have some resonance, however minimal in someones life. We live in a strange time, where fortunately enough we can connect with each other as fast as you are reading this article or listening to my song, but unfortunately hate can pass through the same channels just as quickly. I have been inspired by the events in our world lately to try to spark some change, but the reality is there was change that needed to happened within me, as well. I am attempting to go through a transition many athletes know, many athlete fans have heard of, but very few understand. These thoughts, the tragedy in Las Vegas, the events that have gone on in my now hometown, St. Louis, have inspired me and showed me we are so much stronger when we are together rather than divided. For one I hope you have read this far because I feel it a rarity in our sport of hockey to have people express their feelings at all, let alone put words to paper or song to get them out there.
Above all, I hope you can find it in your hearts to somehow attempt to find common ground, bind together in a common goal of distinguishing hate, and spreading love. We always feel like we can do anything when we have support and there is no reason we should go through lives without the full support or understanding of those around us. Even if this comes from “tough love” because at least that means we care. I am attempting to raise funds and awareness for the people who have exemplified all of these things, the people who truly show we are Stronger Together.