Washington is on fire

By now you’ve all seen the photos, the devastation, the air quality alerts, and heard the awful news. Washington (and much of the west) is on fire. My heart goes out to all those impacted by the fires and I am sending love and appreciation to the many folks helping out.

Now, I know that even in the midst of the fires and emergencies, people’s lives must go on. But a Facebook post from a domestic violence program in the fire/evacuation zone stopped me in my tracks:

A tweet detailing the closing of one domestic violence program due to encroaching wildfires.

A coworker and I commiserated by asking questions into the air:

“Can you believe that someone would have the audacity to continue abusing someone when their community is up in flames?”

“What must it be like to need DV services at a time like this?”

“What is wrong with people?”

But mostly we were just struck with the obvious: Fires happen and are not always preventable. Domestic violence happens and is 100% preventable.

When lightning strikes a dry forest, a fire will likely emerge. That is the cruel reality of nature. But violence is not lightning. Violence is not inevitable and in fact it is a pain of our own creation. There are countless miseries that we can’t avoid, but I know that we can avoid this one. So, let’s all commit to helping out where we can and pledging once again to end a 100% preventable problem – domestic violence. Hugs to all those impacted by both the fires and violence, we’re thinking of you and working to make it better.