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Nov
16
2015

Prior to learning about the Paris attacks,  I was feeling very good about humanity.

You see – in one week, I had lost my wallet and cell phone. In separate incidents. I didn’t even know I lost my wallet until I showed up at the Miami Children’s Museum and didn’t have it. And you’ll be surprised to learn they don’t let you pay for tickets with cheddar goldfish. Thankfully, my dad met me there and loaned me that money museums like so much.

The last time I could remember having my wallet was at a kids’ playspace 24 hours earlier. I was troubled by this realization.

I immediately called them. And they said, “Oh yes. You left it here. We’ve got it.”

Later that day, I picked it up and it still had about $100 worth of cash in it. Wow. We live in a wonderful world.

A few days later, I was visiting New York City and I left my cell phone in an Uber car in Manhattan. Of course, I immediately went to use my cell to call the Uber driver so I could try to get my phone back. Do you see why that scenario didn’t work out so well? (Hint: Because you can’t make a call on a phone you don’t have.)

I didn’t know what the hell to do. I finally used my computer to access my Uber account and then borrowed a phone to call the driver. And you know what?! He was already on his way back to me. Hallelujah.

When he gave me back the cellphone, I gave him $20 bucks because that seemed like the right amount for “THANK YOU FOR SAVING ME SO MUCH MONEY AND STRESS AND INCONVENIENCE.” Maybe I should have given him $40. Or one of my kids. Again, wonderful world.

But hold on, I have more. On the plane to New York City, my 2 1/2 year old son Cash was kicking the seat in front of us. Not a few times. Not a hundred times. About 40,000 times. Unless the woman in front of us was in a coma (which she wasn’t), it was very annoying for her.

I couldn’t get him to stop. I told her to pick anything off the JetBlue menu or bar and I would buy it for her. She declined and then proceeded to help me entertain Cash.

I was so touched by her graciousness.

We landed. And then I learned of the Paris attacks. And it broke my heart. It broke everyone’s heart.

If you lived in New York City during 9-11. Actually scratch that. If you were an American during 9-11, you know what the Parisians are feeling. It’s complete devastation, unbearable sadness and incredible fear. But what the French must understand is that this week, this month, this year, we are all French.

Americans don’t back down from anything. An attack on France is an attack on us. We should stop at nothing to defeat ISIS so that people around the world can live peaceful lives.

Because most people are gracious, loving and will do whatever they can to help some mom whose son is kicking the hell out of their airline seat.

Most people are good. And France, you are not alone. We are with you. And we always will be.

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6 Responses to the paris attacks: why we must still believe in good

  • France in Paris says:

    Thank you.
    From a total stranger reading you for a while from this side of the world, who is glad to see so many of you care.

  • Mary Clare says:

    Amen to peace and extending support to those subjected to violence and terrorism across the world! (My own politic-y side note, I worry that the “Stop at nothing to defeat the terrorists” mentality leads to drawn-at-the-hip, overly hawkish kinds of responses from the Big Western Governments. How do we do it smartly without violating the rights of lots of people? I’m not sure.)


kelcey kintner


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