We are the helpers

Remember Fred Rogers from Mr Rogers Neighborhood? He said something really lovely:

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

So, that’s what I’m doing now.

Sure, there are horrible people who will celebrate the latest nightmare in ‪#‎Orlando‬. Or the stabbing attempt in ‪#‎Jerusalem‬ today that could have seen a mother and baby killed. Or the terror attack in ‪#‎TelAviv‬ on Wednesday that left four people dead.

There were people who celebrated terror in Brussels and Nairobi and Paris and London and New York, too.

There are horrible people everywhere, but there are so many more good people who are reaching out to pick up the pieces with others of different backgrounds and different faiths.

The world is hurting. There are rifts and chasms and there is bleeding and there is pain.

But for the small and very loud band of ratbags who take joy in the pain of others in any capacity, there are way more people out there who want to heal and build and make things better.

Like Yusuf Jabarin, the barman at Max Brenner, who was quick to respond and care for the injured. He is a helper.

Or Ziad Dawiyat, the paramedic who tried to save little baby Chaya after a terrorist rammed the light rail with his car and murdered her — this same paramedic who a year later was there to deliver the heartbroken parents new baby. He is a helper.

Like the first responders in ‪#‎Paris‬, in ‪#‎Nairobi‬, in #Istanbul, in #Orlando. They are the helpers.

Like the firefighters who rushed into the World Trade Center without thinking twice. They are the helpers.

Like Magen David Adom who flew to Istanbul. They are the helpers.

Like the Jewish and Palestinian heroes who work side-by-side come to clean up mosques that were desecrated by Price Tag Attacks. They are the helpers.

Like ordinary people who say publicly and as loudly as possible: ‪#‎NotInMyName‬.

Like ordinary people who reach across the divide and ask “How can I help? How can I be your ally? What do you need to feel safe?”

Like us.

WE are the helpers, and ours are the voices we have to amplify. Because the louder WE are, the quieter the scumbags will seem until they’re drowned out all together.

About the Author
Sarah Tuttle-Singer, Times of Israel's New Media editor, lives in Israel with her two kids in a village next to rolling fields. Sarah likes taking pictures, climbing roofs, and talking to strangers. She is the author of the book Jerusalem Drawn and Quartered. Sarah is a work in progress.