I sit here preparing to write my weekly missive to our wonderful members of Salsaholics Anonymous and I am sick. Sickened by the senseless tragedy that once again befell our city. Sickened by the loss of innocent life. Sickened by the thought of what those who survived but with “life-altering injuries” will have to face. And most of all, sickened by a previously innocuous word that has taken on a sinister connotation: Again.
Again, people who were enjoying the outdoors in fine weather were struck down.
Again, people who happened to be in a particular place at a particular time had their lives cut short or irreversibly harmed.
Again, the leaders of our city, province, and country offer the now de rigueur “thoughts and prayers,” because there is little else to be said and not much that can be done to protect against a gunman on The Danforth and a van driver on Yonge Street.
Again, the alleged perpetrator with his own personal tragedies, driven to create a multitude of tragedies
Again, online comment streams are filling up with hatred, bigotry, xenophobia, toxic politics, and other bile that sickens our society.
I just re-read my post from last April, written in the wake of the Yonge Street van attack, and my thinking and outlook are no different today. I, for one, will dance to honour the injured and the deceased, holding positive thoughts and actual prayers for those who can no longer dance, while doing so. We will continue to dance outdoors at Sidewalk Salsa as a demonstration of the truth that “love is stronger than fear.” We will continue to live not in fear but in love, not in despair but in hope, not in the tragic but in the heroic. And, by dancing we will celebrate life. Again!
See you on the dance floor.