EDITORIAL: Give thanks, and let love conquer hate

Nov. 24—If space monsters attacked the world this Thanksgiving, humans might forget their differences. A common enemy would make us feel the same — each with a shared goal of survival.

In this nightmare, leaders take charge. They defend strangers. Race, gender, sexual orientation, politics or creed have less meaning than FTX crypto.

As we gather, we might approach the table as if we're all in peril. In this moment, we focus on commonalities that outweigh differences.

Uncle MAGA and his left-wing purple-haired niece respect each other — leaving politics out in the cold.

Monsters are real, so we don't have to pretend. Ponder trying to survive in Ukraine as a tyrannical dictator bombs innocent civilians and destroys anything they need to survive the winter. Hunkered down in survival shelters, left versus right, black versus white, Muslim versus Jew does not matter.

Consider the Uyghurs tortured and enslaved by communist China. Prior disputes are no concern.

Contemplate victims in at least six domestic mass murders in just the past month.

Nearly all in Colorado have been touched by the massacre that killed five patrons and injured dozens more last weekend at Club Q in Colorado Springs.

For moments, it was a kill zone. The hate-filled predator was real, bent on killing everyone in sight.

Rational people — most of humanity — have no concern for the politics, lifestyles or group identities of those killed, injured and otherwise traumatized by senseless violence.

During the Club Q attack, 15-year Army veteran, father, husband and businessman Richard Fierro took immediate action and risked his life so others could live. He didn't care who they were. He grabbed the shooter's body armor, put him to the ground and disarmed him. He took the suspect's handgun and used it to pummel his face.

After Fierro took the killer down, club patron Thomas James jumped in to help. A drag queen stomped on the killer's face with high heels. Survival became a common concern that outweighed all others.

In this club, known for decades as a safe place for the LGBTQIA+ community, people from all walks of life danced and socialized with friends, family, acquaintances and strangers.

The deceased include Club Q bartenders Daniel Aston, 28, and Derrick Rump, 38; Kelly Loving, 40, a recent Colorado transplant known for compassion and generosity; Ashley Paugh, 35, a wife and mother; and Raymond Green Vance, 22, whose girlfriend — Fierro's daughter — broke her knee escaping.

Despite the diverse backgrounds of the targets, all were allies as bullets flew. Drag queen and Army vet fought together.

The crime has inspired an outpouring of support throughout Colorado Springs and the rest of the state and country. Each of us can imagine being in that club, desperate for everyone to live another day.

Cast out politics and other divisive subjects while celebrating Thanksgiving. We can bicker another day. Remember those we have lost and those who fight to survive.

Give thanks for heroes among us and for one another's presence — knowing we're more alike than it seems.

Happy Thanksgiving!

The Gazette Editorial Board