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I am terrified. I am scared. I am anxious.

The "unthinkable" is no longer that. Despicable & vile acts of terrorism are now a daily, weekly, monthly occurrence. So many innocent lives have been taken away by radicalized terrorists, and we're not doing enough to fix it.

Today I am calling on EVERY SINGLE ONE of us - every human, creator, influencer, actor, politician, teacher, firefighter, etc - to work together to heal the world around us:

We must stop people from becoming radicalized, isolated, and violent.

We can only do this together.
The internet is making things spiral absolutely out of control. People, especially young male adults, are becoming radicalized by the darkest corners of the web, and there is zero accountability or oversight into these extremist communities. We're losing people to it constantly.
The latest terrorist that was radicalized perpetrated the #NewZealandTerroristAttack. He wanted to split society even further with his actions, his 'manifesto' explicitly states it. He wants to bait us. But in making his intentions clear, he also made his biggest mistake.
We know what this person wanted. What he may not have realized is the 'blueprint' he laid out creates one for us as well. It gives us a clear idea of how we can fight back against his rhetoric, and how we can make sure his goals are never accomplished. How we do so isn't simple.
The basic fact about every one of these terrorists is that they ultimately are still humans. They grew up in this society, they went to schools, they have relatives, family, friends, and teachers. But somewhere along the way, they dropped off the radar and became radicalized.
There are six degrees of separation between all of us. The honest truth is you may know someone in your life today that could be going down the same path of radicalization. If you're an influencer with a huge audience, there is a chance that one of your followers is this person.
I'm not asking anyone to make this all about politics. I'm not asking anyone to run for office. I'm simply asking all of us to do a better job looking out for one another. To stop people from going down this dark path of radicalization, and to be better to one another.
I have always held the belief that today's digital influencers have a responsibility to their audiences. It isn't what we may have asked for, but it is what we create by the nature of our work. It's in the name: influencer. Fans follow and are influenced. THAT is responsibility.
Everyone else in this world has influence too. We have friend groups, teachers have students, and parents have children. We might all be a role model to someone. And there is no way that a terrorist didn't have those in their lives at one point or another. Here's an anecdote:
In college, one of my best friends fell down the internet rabbit hole of conspiracy theories. Senior year, we began to notice that he stopped hanging out, would skip meals, and enclose himself in his room. At first, we didn't question it, we figured he needed time to himself.
But we were worried. We were his friends and his behavior had become erratic. It scared us. We decided to intervene and talk to him, as a whole. It wasn't comfortable. It wasn't easy or fun. But we cared about him and we didn't want to lose him to whatever it was he was doing.
It really sucked for all of us. There was yelling, there was some violence, but we persisted and tried to keep as cool of a head as possible. And we got him out of it. But I'd be lying if it didn't feel like things got worse before they improved. But we all knew it had to happen.
To my fellow influencers, creators, and leaders - I beg of you, please spread this message to your audience. Tell them in no uncertain terms that these supremacist, xenophobic, and radicalized ideas are absolutely unacceptable - and tell them to look out for each other.
To those stoking the fires of drama for views, 'relevancy', and whatever else - just stop. What kind of impact are you making on the world by inciting more vitriol and anger online? Do you think you might be playing right into what a terrorist wants? And for what? Views? Subs?
To everyone else reading this - come to terms with the reality of the situation, but work with everyone to fix it. Statistics tell us the majority of terrorist attacks in the US in 2017 were tied to racist, anti-Muslim, homophobic, anti-Semitic, fascist or xenophobic motivations.
These radicalized ideas and fear instilled in us come from every facet of the internet. From the dark corners of 8chan to platforms we use every day like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. This is not something that is entirely out of our control. This is something we can fight.
We have a problem in the United States, and the majority of it is being perpetrated by people who are domestic. Not those who cross the border. They're right here in our lives. Do you know someone who might be crossing down that path? Then let's do something about it. Together.
Talk to friends, parents, teachers, and/or authorities. Don't let people continue to slip into darkness and become radicalized.

Influencers - spread this message for your fans to do the same. Don't let your content divide us. Let it help us find each other again.
We're an isolated world because of the internet. It's given us an economy of information that can be so incredibly helpful, but the other end of the spectrum is it can make us just as dangerous.

It's time we sat up in our seats and paid attention to how we're being radicalized.
I don't know the exact blueprint of how we're supposed to do this, but I do know one way we can start, and that's by talking to each other and not letting ourselves slip away into radicalization.

It's not going to be easy, but we have to start somewhere, so let's start here.
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