In the past 72 hours:
A man attempted to enter a predominately black church in Kentucky with a gun. When unable to gain access to the building, he went to a Kroger grocery store and killed two American Americans shoppers instead.
A man attempted to kill President Obama, Secretary Clinton, Vice President Biden, several other high ranking members of the Democrat party and a handful of their supporters with pipe bombs sent through the US postal service.
A man entered a synagogue in Pittsburgh and killed 11 people and wounded many others, including law enforcement officers.
The suffering of the victims of these crimes and their loved ones is unspeakable. The damage done to families and communities is immeasurable.
There will be many debates in the coming weeks over the causes of this outburst of violence.
Americans will argue over the hateful rhetoric of a President who just three days ago, in the midst of the pipe bomb scare, praised Republican Republican Greg Gianforte of Montana for physically assaulting a reporter in 2017.
Americans will debate the efficacy of our gun laws.
Americans will rightfully question why the vast majority of these mass killings are perpetrated by white, middle aged men.
There will be much debate, discord, and disagreement. Answers will be hard to come by, and when found, even harder to implement.
But as Americans, I think we can all agree on one thing:
Each of these men were cowards of the highest order. All terrorists, in fact, are cowards. Their stock and trade is the murder of unarmed, innocent people. Their goal is to kill men, women, and children who cannot shoot back or otherwise defend themselves.
Cowards. Ever single one of them. Not a single one of them understands courage.
Serving as a police officer, fire fighter, and first responder requires courage.
Running for political office requires courage.
Living openly as a transsexual person today requires courage.
Standing on a stage and telling a story requires courage.
Serving in our armed forces requires courage.
Caring for an ailing parent requires courage.
Asking someone to marry you requires courage.
Battling cancer requires courage.
Fostering a child requires courage.
Serving as a member of the media - particularly in today’s political climate - requires courage.
Standing up to a bully requires courage.
Sending your child off to kindergarten for the first time requires courage.
Killing unarmed parishioners in places of worship requires nothing more than a coward and his gun.
Mailing bombs to prominent politicians and their supports requires little more than a coward, some gun powder, and a stamp.
As we debate causes and solutions for this senseless violence, let’s also make sure that we let these terrorists and all future terrorists know how history will remember them:
As the greatest cowards of our time. Worthless human beings without an ounce of courage in their bones. Frightened little men who will be reviled by humanity until the end of time.
Cowards. Every single one of them. This is one thing to which every American can agree.
Let’s make sure these cowards and all future cowards know it.