The news today is just numbing. I’ve had CNN on for over two hours, watching the violence unfold in Paris and all I want to do is cry. I’ve never been to France, but I’m told that parts of my family came from there. Today, we’re all French. We’re all sad and angry. Horrified by what is happening.
When I think of France and Paris in particular, I think of romance and history. Mostly history, if I’m being honest. In college, I took a class on the history of Early Modern Europe and every other week it seemed like we were talking about something in France. The one thing that stuck out for me was how much the French stuck together and fought for each other. At one point, there was a running joke about Parisians barricading the city. Just thinking about it makes me smile.
Being an American, I have always felt connected to France because everything that we became started from French philosophers and French aid. One of our biggest national symbols, The Statue of Liberty, was given to us by France to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the American Revolution.
Watching Twitter, I have hope. Hope for humanity. Even with everything going down in Paris, Parisians are opening their homes to strangers in need, using social media to reach out to anyone they can. Cabbies have turned off their meters and are picking up passengers for free. It is in times of the worst darkness that you see the best in people. I truly believe this.
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