Tragedies should not be political platforms


By Logan Weeter

As I’m sure you all know by now, France, Turkey and many other countries were struck by an ISIS terror attack this past Friday. With the massive terror attack that reminded us all about the ISIS threat looming over us, it’s obviously a time to come together as people to ensure that no further harm comes from this event.

At least, that’s what I thought was obvious.

As I scrolled through all the recent news stories the other day, I noticed a story that reminded me that no matter how bad things get, we can always rely on once constant: Politicians always seem to make bad things worse.

Be it Republican, Democrat or somewhere in the middle, you can typically count on a politician to take a tragedy and twist it into ammunition to further their own political agenda.

I don’t need a current news plug to prove that Donald Trump and his campaign is a parade of racism and misinformation, but even so, a Washington Post article this past Sunday brought up Trump’s long-standing plans to kick every Syrian Refugee out of the United States upon election. 

In light of the recent attack, many other candidates are now on board with his plan in one way or another.

On Sunday, Jeb Bush specifically said that everyone needs to focus their help on “Christians that are being slaughtered.”

Ted Cruz went on the record to say that the States should be a “safe haven” for Christians but not “refugees that may have been infiltrated by ISIS.”

Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee said that he wants to eliminate immigration from any countries with a “strong presence of ISIS or al-Qaeda.”

Ben Carson said on Sunday that accepting Syrian refugees is “a suspension of intellect.”

The list goes on and on.

This is an awful mindset to adopt as a human being; these people are responding to the violent attack in France not with unity and awareness, but with a form of their own attack. Yet another cultural attack on almost all the Middle-East and Islam in general.

Not only should one be sending kind thoughts, energy and/or prayers to the victims in Paris, Baghdad and Beirut, but also to those who are now being threatened, aggressively mistreated and downright abused for their religious beliefs as a direct result of poisonous extremist groups. 

In this specific instance the, GOP was the biggest abuser of the tragedy, but the extent of these actions doesn’t limit itself to the Republican Party and those in it. 

The same issue comes up every time that a mass shooting happens, and democratic politicians use the deaths of many a victim to bring up gun control, when all that should be done at that immediate moment is the practice of mourning and unity. 

No politician is innocent in this issue of selfish desensitization to tragedy.

Regardless of the political party, tragedy in and of itself is sacred. The deaths of real human beings are not political soapboxes to stand on to promote one’s own agenda. Politicians and people in general need to recognize that the world is not their political space, and need to acknowledge when a national or global event happens that is simply too sacred to selfishly touch.

Logan is a freshman in LAS.

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