It was an ordinary day, about a week after the deadliest mass shooting in the U.S. I was scrolling through my Facebook feed when I came across a post purporting that “prayers do nothing” in reference to the tragedy, and instead asserts that governmental actions do.
What’s my take on this debate? I agree, but I also disagree.
For starters, I think wishes of “thoughts” do nothing. How are your mere thoughts going to affect the situation at hand? Here’s my solution: I think we need both governmental response and prayers as responses to such tragedies. Obviously, the affected society will need an immediate response from the government to prevent further calamities from the same “mistake.” With the case of the United States’ recent mass shooting, legislation on gun rights needs to be revised to prevent further tragic mass shootings. However, efforts should not stop there. Wishes of prayers are urgently needed too; families of the deceased and injured victims need any form of consolation they can get, and to know that their loss is also their country’s loss will not only console them but even bring increased awareness to the situation also. Furthermore, as tragedies such as these happen often, I see that events like these unite our country in remembrance and mourning. Albeit heartbreaking, people from all kinds of backgrounds — rich or poor, famous or not — come together in prayer.
With this, though, atheists and leftists may fire back and argue on the offenses taken upon peoples’ well-meaning condolences just because they are referencing to a deity. And, of course, this solution is coming from a millennial citizen of the United States who still strongly embraces her conservative and religious upbringing. But if there is one thing that you take away from reading this article, it is that prayer is a powerful tool. Prayer brings people together — whether in mourning, remembrance, or even celebration. Prayer is a means of peace, too. Extending further, prayer could even be a weapon — a weapon we all have at our disposal — to fight against the evils and injustices of this world.
I mean, how hard could it possibly be for a politician to say that they’re immediately working towards a better policy and that they’re praying for those affected by this civil shortcoming? It’s not hard at all.