One of the things that tragedy (or even near-tragedy) does to my brain is that it forces me to re-evaluate my priorities. Does it matter if my kids are five minutes late to school? Not so much. Are the ways I spend my time worthwhile when you consider that life and death can be so unpredictable?
I'm trying to work on being positive. Because for every horrible act, there are probably a thousand kind ones. For every person who destroys, there are so many more heroes who make life better for other people.
Humanity lives at the extremes and in the mundane. There is the evil, there is the good, and there is the ordinary mixture of both. The bad stuff has to make the news, but sometimes the good things do, too. Evil seems incomprehensible to most of us, especially at its most extreme, but goodness? That's something we get. Most of us have some kind of yearning inside to make things better, to lift instead of tear down. So instead of dwelling on evil in order to try to understand it, why not dwell on goodness in order to make it part of ourselves?
Sometimes you have to figure out what's wrong in order to fix it. Sometimes you have to determine where you need to change before you can create the good the world needs. Sometimes acts of kindness are complex, and sometimes they're simple.
That's all I've got. Try as I might, I haven't been able not to make these things personal.
In the words of Aesop: "No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted." Never. Kindness matters. Making the world a better place is important, even if that improvement only helps one person.
So yes, for me the news has become personal. But I hope that the end result of the grieving for people I don't know, of watching others be hurt by cruel words, of people using others to get what they want, is that all of us, no matter how or where, can find the goodness within ourselves that's been there all along. And share it.