Much of my words from the original submission were edited to fit the readers of this publication. You'll find the story, as it was written, below under it's original title: 'Cries Of War'.

A link to the published story in San Antonio's independent online publication, Rivard Report can be found HERE.

CRIES OF WAR

It’s now been a week since the attacks on Paris, the place my San Antonian husband has called home for the past 12 years. A place I more recently named my home.

The news has been alight with action film-esqe captures of the attackers alleged to have caused the horrific tragedy so recently passed. The rash President of the Republique, like the Bush who burned before him, speaks words familiar. Sends bombs. Wages war.

But there are no celebrations here. Unmoved, Parisians react with ambivalence.

They’re not naïve enough to think the captures of these criminals will change anything. It certainty won’t bring back the lives lost, nor prevent similar horrors from occurring. Nor are they naïve enough to think small men with big bombs will fix their problems either.

So they lay flowers, light candles, and quietly, with sorrow and defiance in their eyes, celebrate life again. As they always have and always will. Their solidarity stated in unity from freshly painted walls throughout the city “Fluctuat Nec Mergitur” it reads, “tossed by the waves but not sunk”.

But the world does not follow suit. The media sensationalises. And on the walls of a world in which people hide their faces behind photos hued in red, white and blue, a different reaction ensues, fuelled by the very impulse of ignorance and hatred, which reaped death on these streets.

They blame Refugees (those who flee their home country due to heinous acts of terror) and Muslims (1.57 billion people who couldn't possibly "all be terrorists" or "we" would all be very extinct) for these acts of terror, and in their reactive generalizations, they support the very fear, hatred and violence they attempt to condemn. Ignorantly, they promote the next tragedy. Ignorantly, they feed the anger resting inside the dormant souls of those who commit crimes like these.

Directly disrespecting the lives lost, they use a tragedy they don’t understand as a platform for their heightened racism and dehumanization. Conclusive chatter which insults the very beliefs the majority of the lives lost here fought for and believed in.

“WAR” the close-minded shout, with sinful wrath burning in their bellies, suffocating their souls.

“WAR” they cry again, forgetting, these tragedies, though horrific, are reactions amplified and provoked by the wars we as a Western world wage.

Forgetting that if one allows their heart to fill with hatred and their soul to fill with wrath, one becomes no better, nor worse, than those who seek to destroy the peace and freedom these cries of “WAR” claim to protect.

That they have learned to think like those they so venomously hate.

For they’ve fed from the same fires of terror, death and darkness.

For they have become very much the same.