These past weeks, my life and the life of those around the world have completely changed due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). I know the second you read the word Coronavirus, you will have an inclination to move on to the next article, but please bear with me.
The past few days alone I witnessed people fighting over toilet paper; government officials so focused on fighting each other, they forgot about helping the people they serve; news outlets are focused on placing blame rather than reporting on facts and our country has been brought back to a historic level of xenophobia. Schools have shut down and the economy is collapsing.
This is truly a crisis and I don’t think I’ve witnessed a darker moment in my life. However, as Dr. Martin Luther King said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.”
In the same way, we can’t let fear and uncertainty rule our lives.
In the darkness of this crisis, I see glimpses of light. I see light in the brave medical workers at the frontline of the war against this virus and in the teachers, who are adapting to online classes. I even see light in the youth, who are trying to keep everyone’s spirits up with memes and jokes. If we continue to focus on the light, rather than the darkness, we will overcome this fear.
In an effort to promote light I propose the Red Ribbon Project.
If you want to take part in this effort, simply tie a red ribbon around your wrist and share this message with your friends and family. Let us help others find the light. Let’s change society’s current culture of fear to one of understanding; blame to communication; and hate to empathy.
It is only by doing this that we will be able to heal as a world, both physically and mentally.
Photos by Clarisa Russenberger