September 3, 2018: Labor Day Heartbreak

Today brought heartbreaking news locally and around the world.

In Brazil, a devastating fire destroyed the National Museum. Countless artifacts documenting Brazil’s history, as well as other countries’ precious gifts, are now in ruins. I didn’t want to believe it when I first came across the story this morning online, but when I turned on the television and saw the museum in flames, I felt waves of sadness. So much work, so much history, gone. I mourn the loss of another piece of history and cultural value, and pray that this wasn’t the work of hurtful individuals.

I also mourn the loss of those killed in local soil. There were three reported shootings in Paterson over the weekend. I say ‘reported’ because this type of violence happens regularly in this area, yet rarely receive any media attention. Since I grew up in Paterson, and still have family living there to this day, I’m aware of the rough conditions firsthand. My family is at a crossroads when it comes to living in Paterson: some want to leave, return to Puerto Rico, where my line originated. Others want to stay, live life in the moment, since ‘violence happens everywhere’. While this fact is indeed true, there’s a child to be concerned about, who will soon start school life, and navigate the neighborhood with new friends. I pray that Ana will stay protected, and keep away from negative influences during daily life.


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