In light of all that has happened this year, I don’t think celebrations should occur to commemorate our nation’s 70th Independence Day. However, since it is a day that is supposed to be a symbol of patriotic pride and a reminder of national unity (both of which are things we always need more of), there are things you can do to celebrate in a way that gives back.
In the past few years, I have read about many instances where people have decided to “pay it forward” in honor of someone’s passing. “Paying it forward”, made popular by the 2000 film, is the act of spreading kindness that will cause the recipient to do another random act of kindness to someone else as their form of “payment.” As a result, you have a snowball effect of good deeds.
Lebanon is in need of random acts of unification. We are walking on a tightrope while blindfolded because we don’t want to acknowledge the reality or because we have become too numb to a stable level of instability. It is our differences that make us Lebanese and it is our differences that makes us beautiful. The forces that are creating this fear and causing this destruction are not Lebanon. The people who want to enjoy a barbecue at their grandparents’ house on Sunday are Lebanon. The people who want to build a future are Lebanon. We are Lebanon.
In honor of the lives lost, let’s start acting like a community that has a common fundamental belief:
My family and friends deserve to lead a happy and safe existence.
Hopefully, these acts will catch on and inspire others to do good things to their fellow Lebanese for no other reason other than we are one. On the larger scale, maybe this will not make a difference but you will be spreading the idea of unification and brightening at least one person’s day. That, in a country that is so infused with worry for what lies ahead, is priceless.
- Tape a dollar to a vending machine with an anonymous “have a break, have a KitKat” note
- Donate blood with DSC Lebanon
- Suspended coffees or meals (or leave money for the next person’s parking tab)
- Buy a falafel sandwich for a homeless person
- Leave a nice note/doodle for a stranger on their windshield, they’ll think it’s a ticket so it’ll be a great surprise
- Ask someone about their holiday traditions
- Pull a Jerome Jarre on a stranger (just make them smile)
You get the idea. Let’s get something going – share your deed on Twitter/Instagram and spread the love #70ActsToUnite #Lebanon