Tick. Tick. Tick. Man down. Woman down. Now another. And another.
Time is running. People fleeing. Quickly fleeing. Don’t delay. Get out of here.
Shots fired. “Everyone down. Now. To the floor. Take cover. Take shelter. Run.”
Insufficient provocation. Overzealous prosecution. Not in self-defense.
Ambush in retaliation. Countless injured. Random violence. Violent crime.
Soldiers. Cops. Line of duty. Won’t come home now. Towns are mourning.
Civil wars and bombed-out buildings. Body counts and children wailing.
On our streets. In public places. In our homes, domestic violence.
People screaming. People sobbing. People shouting. Loss of feeling.
Keep alert. Be vigilant. Soft target. Hard target. Concealed weapon. Look out.
“It’s the world we live in. Don’t give in. Live your lives. Get on with it.”
That’s what they say. So we get numb. It’s the way it is, I guess. Surrender.
But Tick. Tick. Tick. Time is running. Out on us. Because we’re ‘outing’ us.
It’s the Next Extinction. Not a drought. Not a famine. Not a meteor strike.
No, it’s our strike on us. Our killing fields. Not-so-friendly fire. Not in the least.
We’re in the crossfire. Our own to be exact. To the bitter end. Our end, to be clear.
What possesses us? To hurt and wound? To kill another? To take a life?
The one now gone was a father, too. A mother. Child. Sister. Friend.
But gone too soon. Only tears and grief remain. Another soul now lost to us.
And the tears we shed are not just ours. They’re God’s as well. God cries too.
With anguish. At a light snuffed out. A soul bled out. A life gone out.
So when is enough, enough? How many more senseless deaths are too many?
Before we Stand-Down. And lay our weapons down. Put our hate down. Anger too.
Sit down. Bow down. Calm down. Dial it down. And stop talking down to others.
And cherish each life. For they all matter. Because they are of God. From God.
We are meant to hold, not to hurt. We are meant to heal and help, not to harm.
We are meant to love, not to hate. We are meant to stand up, not to fall.
If only we’ll first Stand-Down. In Peace. Friendship. Just Communion. Reconciliation.
We have a choice. No one will do it for us. It’s ours to do. For ourselves. For each other.
For the sake of sacred life. For our family’s sake. For the world’s sake. For God’s sake.
There has to be a better way to solve our problems. A way of peace. A way of wellbeing.
What if we chose to Stand-Down? One person at a time. For it’s long since time.