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Have a Heart

Jaylon Ferguson
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I can’t get this picture of Jaylon Ferguson and his children out of my mind. Maybe I don’t want to. This image gives me some measure of comfort while at the same time, it tortures me. You can probably understand why.

Jaylon is gone. When a 26-year-old world class athlete dies, you know the details are not going to be pleasant. Yet some people, too many for my liking, have this insatiable appetite for the particulars. Sure enough, the sordid minutiae when uncovered, will spread like wildfire, distributed along the highways of social media.

And once you know the facts, are you happier?

What is it about so many of us that raises our curiosity levels and compels us to wrap our minds around the fine print of the case, as if any one of us is Sergeant Joe Friday or Columbo or Magnum P.I.? Does the knowledge change anything for YOU?

Try and put yourself in the shoes of Jaylon Ferguson’s family.

Respect them with your empathy. Express your condolences. Pray for their peace of mind and strength to endure the struggles ahead. Allow them to mourn.

Does the media have to race to see what happened and be the first to report it? Does an investigative reporter have to break the details of the tragedy before family and friends can even express their sorrow or take a deep breath while enveloped in uncontrollable emotions?

Have a heart!

When the dust settles, that’s the time to sift through the details. And when the sifting begins, seek solutions to prevent similar tragedies. Don’t look to uncover more unsavory details that only make things more difficult for the victim’s survivors.

Walk in their shoes for a moment and then try to imagine what you might need if in their undesirable situation. Then act accordingly. That’s the right thing to do.

Piling on or racing to judgment or being among the first to share the dirty laundry is nothing short of being inhumane.

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