We Will Not Let Hate Beat Us

| Stockholm, Sweden | Awesome

I live in Sweden and last week (beginning of April) our capital was struck by a terrorist attack. A man hijacked a truck and drove it down a busy shopping street, crashing it into a major store. Four people were killed and fifteen injured. The man who did it has claimed ties to Daesh.

While this act is horrible, the aftermath has been nothing short of beautiful. Within minutes of the attack off-duty police who were nearby took charge of the situation and kept people calm, followed shortly by their on-duty colleagues. The transit system was closed down to avoid possible secondary attacks so a lot of people were stranded, but the businesses and people in that area opened their doors wide to anyone in need.

They offered shelter, food, rides home, and phones to call their loved ones. Everything worked really smoothly and since then the city has been bathed in love.

The police have been given flowers and hugs by people wanting to express their gratitude. While there have been some hate mongering from Islamophobic “anti-immigration” types, it has been met with a solid wall of love.

A few days after the attack there was a “manifestation of love” held in a square near where the attack took place and tens of thousands of people gathered to show that we will not let hate beat us.

We will continue showing love and understanding and face darkness and hatred with light and hope. It has been very uplifting to see this in what could have been a very dark hour.

Kind Strangers Kindness

Help Is A New York Minute Away, Part 2

| Kind Strangers

I moved to New York City for graduate school immediately after graduating college. Less than a week after moving in, I go out for a walk and realize, when I get home, that I have lost my wallet. I’d had it in my back pocket and it must have fallen out. As dusk fell, I went out retracing my steps, searching for it, questioning my competence as a so-called independent adult.

Suddenly, my phone buzzes with an e-mail alert from my school. Someone has found my wallet — complete with student ID. I’m not sure exactly what the process is, but my school apparently has some arrangement with the police, so the school sent me an e-mail telling me my wallet was safely in a police cruiser at a nearby intersection.

I go to find the police car, practically limp with relief. Nothing is missing. Someone else had found my wallet and given it to them, and apparently they had been able to contact me through my school — everything safely restored in less than an hour.

I know the stereotypes about New Yorkers, but there were a lot of steps in that system where people had to be thoughtful, observant, and helpful for that to work!

Help Is A New York Minute Away