I did not mark myself “safe” on Facebook after the mass shooting in the Oregon District.
I could not bring myself to lie.
But I have been lying. A lot of us have. We say we are fine, but that is not true.
I am not fine and chances are, neither are you.
How could we be “fine” when nine people whose only crimes were living and breathing died in Dayton’s living room?
Derrick Fudge, 57.
Lois Oglesby, 27.
Saeed Saleh, 38.
Logan Turner, 30.
Nicholas Cumer, 25.
Thomas McNichols, 25.
Beatrice Warren-Curtis, 36.
Monica Brickhouse, 39.
Megan Betts, 22.
They will never again hear “I love you,” or feel a caring arm wrapped around their waist.
That’s not fine.
It is not fine that Derrick Fudge died in his son’s arms, or that Lois Oglesby will never again rock her infant.
It is not fine that Megan Betts will never again sing with Wright State’s chorus, or that Thomas McNichols will never again play Fortnite with his kids and nephews.
It is not fine that Monica Storey Brickhouse and Beatrice ‘Nicole’ Warren-Curtis will never get to hang out again.
It is not fine that Logan Turner will not get to see his old high school football friends, or that Sudanese community members from around the state had to came to Dayton to comfort Saeed Saleh’s family.
It s not fine that Nicholas Cumer will not be able to serve cancer patients through the Maple Tree Cancer Alliance.
It is senseless. It is horrible. It is disgusting. It is not fine.
It is not fine that I have seen cops, bouncers, reporters and waitresses break down in tears.
It is not fine that blood stained a Dayton street or that cell phones, shoes and purses were lost as the innocent people jumped over fences and ran out of doors for their safety.
It is not fine that a place of joy is now a place in mourning.
It is not fine that this is becoming just fine, just normal.
It is not fine that this will happen again in some other town.
We will all act as if we are shocked.
But we’ll be lying again.