Pissing Contest

Can we not compare?
In a world where cars and handbags show status and rank us from the worthy to the worthless,
In a world where the school you attend or the haircut you have places you in a little box,
Can we not?
It was Remembrance Day and I remembered our fallen and still walking heroes, but forgot the moment of silence
When men in wheelchairs, being pushed by women, paused at the monument I ate my dinner,
But not out of disrespect, just out of having shit to do and finding the time to be still, to be calm, is difficult
Beirut was bombed and I “liked” statuses condemning these attacks and I thought of my lovely friend who was born there
Whose family still lives there and I shook my head and I cursed these fucking monsters who, like kids on the 4th of July, just can not leave the fucking explosives alone
But instead of blowing off fingers and faces they are blowing the faces off nations,
I read articles and hurt, but I did not “share” because sharing bad news is like slapping a friend
Then Paris was bombed and held hostage and shot at and I thought of Charlie Hebdo
I thought of how I stayed quiet then because I get in trouble over politics
But I’d had some red wine and I thought “fuck it,” Paris cannot burn again and I say nothing
But my saying something has meant that people can now say that I am wrong and racist and ignorant, because I didn’t say for Beirut.
Can we not compare?
Can we not accept that things are very broken and if you are telling people how to grieve their broken things you are not helping,
you are breaking
Paris was the backdrop for my engagement, for happy holidays and my anniversary
Paris is the place I got food poisoning and suffered in a bathroom so small I could shower and shit all at once
Paris is the place where so many childhood dreams played out in Technicolor reality – skin tingling, mouth watering reality
But don’t say that I am ignorant for grieving Paris
Don’t say that I am a fraud for not including every major fucking tragedy in the world that has happened over the past week
Don’t tell people who are carrying their hearts in their hands like bone china that you don’t like the pattern
Can we not compare?
Can we not declare how other people are supposed to feel and care?
There’s enough fucking tragedy to go around, you see, and I don’t want to share.

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