I knew something had happened when my friends’ Facebook profile pictures changed color.
The black, yellow, and red were unfamiliar to me. We don’t spend much time on geography in school these days.
We should probably change that.
I clicked on ATTN:, a news source I follow on Facebook, to read about the attacks. The state of emergency. The outpouring of support on social media. The cartoon someone made of a French flag hugging a Belgian flag.
At the bottom of the article, ATTN: had one of its usual poll questions.
“Are you shocked by this act of violence?”
The options for answering were “Yes” or “No.” But all I could think was, “I wish I was.”
This seems to be how the world is now. I am far from blase about it, but no, I was not shocked.
Instead, I will be shocked, happily so, as in the wake of the Paris attacks last year, by humanity’s best responding to this demonstration of its worst. The volunteers. The blood donors. The people across faiths praying for peace. As Mr. Rogers said, I will look for the helpers.