Paris attacks elicit strong response from Calgarians
Social media flooded with emotion on Friday, as people grappled with the French terror spree
Social media is the new town centre, and Calgarians joined a global chorus on Friday to share their feelings and their thoughts after the gruesome attacks in Paris.
- Paris attacks: At least 120 killed, 8 attackers dead
- Paris attacks: Witnesses describe scenes of carnage and chaos
- Photos of Paris attacks show scenes of chaos
Amanda Lindhout, a woman who knows terror in a very real sense after being kidnapped and held hostage in Somalia, summed up the feelings of a majority on Twitter on Friday when she called for understanding and urged people not to blame refugees, who are often victims of extremism themselves.
Fear of refugees who have fled this exact kind of violence in their homeland is not what we need in Canada.—@AmandaLindhout
It was indicative of a common call to decency, a call to not descend into anger.
All of us are struggle to make sense of the horrific violence today in Paris. For now, we pray and commit ourselves to show goodness to all.—@nenshi
Instead, many chose to focus on grief and solidarity in the face of the horror, and social media was flooded with thoughts for Paris.
We've never been closer together. That's not incidental. We grieve with Paris because we've never had better conduits for our empathy.—@theturner
Also never had better conduits for amplifying the worst of our nature. Also not incidental. But vastly out-numbered by the empathetic.—@theturner
The sorrow and the sympathy also included pleas to not unleash hatred against entire populations based on the actions of a few.
Our hearts ache tonight for <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Paris?src=hash">#Paris</a>. Whatever the final cause, remember every religion has its <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/zealots?src=hash">#zealots</a>. We're praying for all. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/nofear?src=hash">#nofear</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/yyc?src=hash">#yyc</a>—@PeppinoGourmet
Of course there was anger.
And there was also anger that Paris has produced such an outpouring, including official safety warnings on Facebook, while attacks in Beirut elicited comparative silence.
Contrasting Lebanon to Paris. How many of us even know the colours of the Lebanese flag? I don’t. *Every* life lost was as human as you & I.—@bikeasana
There were also vain efforts to stem the tide of false information and false imagery that flooded Twitter on Friday, with images from last year's Charlie Hebdo attack shared continuously, and images of attacks elsewhere clouding the conversation.
Doubt a viral picture is actually of a current event? In Chrome, right click & select "Search Google for this Image" & all will be revealed.—@paulisci
Despite some of the anger and frustration, Calgarians celebrated the show of solidarity in the city, with McMahon Stadium, the Langevin Bridge and the Calgary Tower all lit up in the colours of France.
The colors of France glow from Calgary tonight. <a href="https://t.co/AFxEOm84JW">pic.twitter.com/AFxEOm84JW</a>—@mikesbloggity
Our part of this darkness. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Paris?src=hash">#Paris</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/yyc?src=hash">#yyc</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/atblightsyyc?src=hash">#atblightsyyc</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/nenshi">@nenshi</a> <a href="https://t.co/lQEqx5MSjk">pic.twitter.com/lQEqx5MSjk</a>—@dmowat_atb
In the end, however, there was simply sadness. Sadness that so many lives were lost and that the city of lights was made so dark.
My heart is broken <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Paris?src=hash">#Paris</a>—@jadecwong