United we can stand against terrorism

Senseless tragedies seem to beget more senseless tragedies these days, leaving us both sad and angry, perhaps even a little afraid.

What happened at the Brussels airport this week is yet another reminder of how fragile life really is, how quickly violence can enter one’s life and how the detestable acts of a few can can come back to haunt an entire people.

The bombings of the Brussels airport and subway this week are being called the work of the same Islamic State cell that attacked Paris last year. In all, 34 people were killed, including three suicide bombers and another 270 were injured.

Terrorist cells, like ISIS, try to muscle their way into our hearts and minds through violent acts designed to turn us against our fellow man, and thus provide them a conduit by which to gain more recruits.

It is the one bad apple syndrome on steroids, and we cannot allow our understandable prejudices towards groups who cause death and destruction to be leveled against innocent people of the same race. That plays into the hands of terrorists hoping our divisions will be their victories.

Not every Muslim is a terrorist and should not be treated as such. Shunning people because of their race or religion is no solution; in fact it part of the problem that continues to grow.

What happened in Belgium, just as what happened in Paris last year and at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a wooded field in Pennsylvania in 2001, is a detestable, violent act upon us all. When our brother is hurt, so, too, are we.

Our hearts go out to the families of those who lost loved ones in this most recent attack, and our prayers go up for them and for those injured. But it is our plea that we, as a world community, don’t allow these violent acts to divide us. Instead we should allow them to draw us closer together, understanding that united we can stand against terror but divided we will eventually all fall.