Sunday was one of the worst ways to be awoken. Seeing and reading the reports coming from Orlando broke my heart. Men, women doing nothing but trying to enjoy an evening of dancing and connection, a place that should have been safe, only to become a living nightmare that many will never wake up from. When does this kind of thing end?
Now typically I usually share my thoughts on comics and pop culture, and I will get to that in a moment, but times like this we must set aside our personal interests and focus on what can be done. Moving forward out of the shadow of hate and live up to our potential as human beings.
A few weeks ago I was asked a question that surprisingly I have never been asked before; “What is my attraction to Science Fiction?” It was surprising as I have been a Geek most my life and no one has ever really posed this query to me until then. My answer I feel is something that is most appropriate in desperate times like these…Hope.
Science Fiction to me is not some dystopian, ugly fate that awaits our world. In the best of hands it is a glimpse at a better tomorrow, an opportunity to see a universe where we have gotten past our petty differences and frailties. It is the kind of hope that puts man in a place where we have evolved and advanced not just technologically but most importantly; emotionally, spiritually. The idea of a diverse harmony that both appreciate and promote the unique qualities we are each blessed with.
We have so much to offer as a race. At times most tragic, we often see glimmers of this Hope I speak of. We hear of heroics and sacrifice. We witness the loving outreach of our neighbors and share in the pain that has been inflected. We offer up our warm thoughts, prayers and most importantly: Love.
We live on a beautiful planet that is hanging precariously on a tipping point. It is time we start making the reality of the science fiction I speak of by starting to choose hope and making that our destination as a species. This is a call for empowerment, to better us and in doing so bettering our world.
You see hope is not a just a campaign buzzword that gets thrown around to gather votes. We have all seen the politics that have muddied and clouded this word in recent times. To me it is a promise that dangles like a carrot in front of us as a reward for the journey taken. It is a grand opportunity that we all must agree upon to make our next reality better for the generations to come.
Thank you for indulging me, as I realize that this is a bit “soap boxish” but to be fair, it is something I believe we can and should do, as both individuals and as a people wanting change.
To the victims and families of the Orlando shooting, my heart grieves for you all. You are in my heart and prayers and know that this NDN Geek will always stand by you.
Jeffrey Veregge is an award winning artist and designer from the Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe in Kingston, Washington. A professional comic book artist who works with Marvel, Valiant and IDW Comics. Speaks fluently the languages of Geek, Nerd and occasionally Droid. Follow him on twitter at https://twitter.com/JeffreyVeregge