A year ago this week my hometown Charleston lost nine amazing people to a shooter in a church.
This week, Orlando lost 50 wonderful souls to a shooter in a club.
I'm writing this article today not to address any political agendas, but to beg for peace, hope and love.
When the people in my city, Charleston, heard the news of the shootings, they gathered together and showed the shooter and everyone behind him that race does not divide us. We held hands, we prayed, we sang, we donated.
When Orlando received word of the horrific news, they too gathered together, instead of separated, to give support in any way they could. One Blood sent out a message just 24 hours after the shooting that their Orlando location was "over capacity" with a line down the street wanting to donate blood.
Now I am not trying to compare the two shootings in any way, but rather, I'm comparing the responses. In both situations, people tried to make it political immediately after it happened. I'm writing to beg you to stop. Give the families time to mourn. Give the city time to grow stronger and more unified before ripping it apart with a political agenda.
Let's do what we can as soon as we can to help the families who lost loved ones know that they are not forgotten. Give them hope in a time of darkness. Give the city of Orlando peace in the midst of chaos.